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Florida wage-and-hour law violations may result in settlement too

Readers in Florida who have a vested interest in wage-and-hour law as it pertains to employment may be eager to learn about a recent settlement between the Doubletree Hotel and more than 100 employees. Purportedly, the hotel violated the Fair Labor Standards Act for failure to compensate employees properly. As such, the hotel will pay over $102,000 to recompense employees for wage-and-hour law violations.

The hotel was charged with wrongly classifying nonexempt employees as exempt, failure to include bonus pay in regular rates when calculating overtime pay and rounding off time worked incorrectly. The franchise that owns the Doubletree Hotel agreed to settle after the U.S. Department of Labor conducted an investigation. The Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division found that the hotel was, in fact, in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

According to the investigation, employees were not compensated for work performed after shifts were finished or before they started. Employee pay had also been deducted for lunch breaks without regard to whether or not employees actually had the opportunity to eat. Not only that, but the hotel neglected to pay employees time and a half for overtime hours, instead paying regular rates.

The investigation also revealed that the Doubletree Hotel neglected to maintain required records for employees' hours and wages. According to news reports, the Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division is making more of an effort to investigate low-wage occupations in the hospitality industry because employers routinely make similar mistakes to those discovered in the Doubletree case. As such, employers are encouraged to use due diligence" in wage and hour practices.

Unfortunately, violations of wage-and-hour law are not uncommon. Employees who feel they have been victimized by wage and hour mistakes - either accidental or intentional - may choose to consider their options within the reach of the legal system. Some Florida residents may find that exploring their options can offer a means to recover hard earned income.

Source: Business Management Daily, "Richardson Doubletree Hotel settles wage-and-hour suit," March 22, 2013

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