A Longwood, Florida-based landscaping company has been ordered to pay $44,280 in back wages to 75 employees for repeatedly failing to pay them overtime, according the Department of Labor.
After an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division, Competitive Edge Landscaping violated the Fair Labor Standards Act’s overtime requirements when it paid employees flat rates per day regardless of the number of hours they actually worked, depriving workers of earned overtime pay.
Investigators found additional overtime violations when the Competitive Edge began paying on an hourly basis, but still failed to pay overtime when employees worked beyond 40 hours per week.
When Competitive Edge did begin to pay overtime, it erroneously excluded bonus payments from workers’ regular rates of pay, resulting in paying overtime rates lower than those required by law.
Investigators also found the employer failed to maintain required payroll records, an FLSA recordkeeping violation.
“Most workers - including those paid by the day, by the job, by the unit, or on a weekly salary - are still entitled to overtime when they work more than 40 hours in a workweek,” says Wage and Hour Division District Director Daniel White, in Jacksonville. “We encourage all employers to use the tools the U.S. Department of Labor offers to learn about their responsibilities and to avoid violations.”