The owner of eight Modesto, CA-based residential care facilities said the company has implemented new safeguards after it was ordered to pay $135,092 in back pay to 56 employees, along with civil penalties, for what the U.S. Department of Labor called “widespread” violation of minimum wage and overtime requirements.
Golden Age Home Care, which provides assisted living, memory care and community services, and its owners violated the Fair Labor Standards Act by paying caregivers flat rates per day, regardless of the number of hours worked, according to the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division. Those rates did not cover all of the hours employees worked at the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. The company also reportedly did not pay overtime wages to employees who worked more than 40 hours in a workweek.
Employer time records did not capture interruptions to workers’ sleep time, and the company did not pay workers for hours worked for required training, according to the Labor Department. The employer also reportedly did not display a Fair Labor Standards Act poster, as required.
Marinela Placintar, owner of Golden Age Home Care, told McKnight’s Senior Living that operators need to have all of their employee contract paperwork in order and know the regulations of the states in which they operate. She said Golden Age Home Care now has contracts defining work hours and has implemented an electronic system for employees to log in and out of their shifts.
Along with the back wages, Golden Age Home Care also was fined $27,872 in civil penalties “due to the repeat nature of the violations.”