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Residential care workers get pay covering wage violations

On Sept. 17, the California Department of Industrial Relations announced that employees of a residential-based care business will receive compensation for violations related to wage and overtime. The settlement totaled $450,000 for 15 employees. There were also claims of meal violations, and $89,000 related to that remains in dispute.

The investigation into the practices of the care home began in December 2015. Employees at two locations reported violations. An audit revealed that 12-hour shifts with no overtime pay were not uncommon. In 2016, a total of $486,400 in citations was issued. The owner of the business then tried to protect assets from liability by creating a trust for the real estate, but the labor commissioner alleged this was fraudulent in a civil lawsuit.

The home has two San Rafael locations. Workers will be paid around $25,000 on average with individual workers receiving anywhere from $49 to more than $77,000. The state's general fund will get $75,000 in penalties. Employees may receive another $77,400 for back pay if the alleged meal time violation is upheld, and the state will get $12,660 in penalties.

People who believe they are not being paid fairly at work may want to talk to an attorney. The specific violation might be related to unpaid overtime, being paid less than minimum wage, misclassification or some other issue. Some workers may hesitate to report these types of violations because they are concerned about retaliation, but legal counsel may be able to provide proper guidance through the process. In some situations, more than one employee could be affected by the violations. Workers may be owed back pay as well as additional compensation depending on the specifics of the situation.

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