Alleged wage violations could cost company $60,000

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The U.S. Department of Labor is seeking more than $60,000 in back wages and damages from a company it says improperly paid nursing assistants who worked in an assisted living community.

When calculating wages, Sage Holding Group, doing business in Rochester Hills, MI, as Generations Home Care, incorrectly used an exemption meant for workers who provide companionship services in private homes, according to an investigation by the department's Wage and Hour Division. The company paid straight time for overtime hours, whereas the Fair Labor Standards Act requires that covered nonexempt employees be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour for all hours worked, plus time and a half their regular hourly rate for hours worked beyond 40 per week.

The Wage and Hour Division had investigated the company in 2010 for paying nurses straight time for the overtime hours they had worked. At the time, the company paid back wages and agreed to comply with the FLSA in the future, according to the labor department.

“Generations Home Care is acutely aware of wage laws that are applicable to its employees, yet the company continues to fail to meet its wage obligations,” said Timolin Mitchell, district director for the Wage and Hour Division in Detroit.

The division assessed $61,600 in civil money penalties for “willful and repeated violations” of the FLSA.

The labor department lawsuit also names the company's owner, Vincent Salvia.

A call to Generations Home Care requesting comment was not returned.

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