FLSA Claim: South Florida Construction Company Pays Nearly $125,000 in Back Wages
On September 3rd, 2020, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that a South Florida construction company will provide $124,075 in back wages to nearly two dozen employees. The settlement came after allegations that the firm violated wage and hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and federal prevailing wage regulations. Here, our West Palm Beach employment law attorneys offer an explanation of the allegations, settlement, and federal prevailing wage regulations.
Allegations: Employer Committed Prevailing Wage and Overtime Violations
Earlier this year, the DOL launched an investigation into the practices of Roepnack Corp, a general contractor that is based in Miami Beach, Florida. The investigation was focused on the company’s work on a federally funded construction project—the renovation of a senior living facility in Hialeah. Florida. The construction work was performed under a contract from Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
In its investigation, the DOL determined that Roepback Corp violated federal wage and hour regulations. Specifically, the company was accused of failing to pay certain employees their full and fair overtime wages and failing to pay several employees the proper prevailing wage. Without admitting or denying any wrongdoing, the South Florida contractor agreed to settle the case by paying nearly $125,000 in back wages to at least 20 employees.
Federally Funded Construction Projects are Subject to Unique Wage and Hour Requirements
Companies that take on federally funded construction are required to pay a ‘prevailing wage’. Simply defined, a prevailing wage is defined as the hourly wage that is the standard rate of pay within a particular geographic area. Notably, a prevailing wage is inclusive of all relevant employee benefits. Prevailing wage benefits should be consistent with industry standards.
The federal government does not want to ‘undercut’ employee wages when approving a new contract in the construction industry. It requires general contractors and subcontractors to pay market rate wages for their area. Prevailing wage cases can be complicated as the proper wage can vary from region to region and from job to job. Employers that work under federally funded contracts and fail to pay a prevailing wage may be held legally liable through a wage and hour claim.
If you are an employer or employee with questions about prevailing wage regulations, you should consult with an experienced wage and hour lawyer. Your employment attorney will review your issue and help you take action to protect your rights and interests.
Call Our West Palm Beach FLSA Attorneys for Help With Your Legal Claim
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, we represent employers and employees in the full range of FLSA cases. Do you want more information about prevailing wages or overtime laws? We are more than ready to help. Call us now for a confidential review of your case. With locations in West Palm Beach and Miami, our attorneys handle prevailing wage and overtime cases all over the wider region, including in Miami-Dade, Broward, Monroe, Martin, and Palm Beach counties.