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Friday, May 24, 2024

Department of Labor alleges Kansas restaurants didn’t pay minimum or overtime wages - AOL

The U.S. Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against the owner of two Kansas restaurants, alleging he refused to pay minimum and overtime wages to staffers.

According to the suit filed March 15, El Toro Loco, which has locations in Kansas City, Kansas and Lenexa, and owner Alfonzo Herrera Hernandez as well as two managers allegedly committed multiple violations of federal minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping requirements which impacted 75 employees.

A department investigation of payroll records from May 2020 through May 2022 found that the restaurants owed employees $771,794 – $385,897 in back wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages.

Investigators said employers paid staff a cash wage of $2.30 an hour for 80 hours in a pay period regardless of how much they worked. If an employee was paid for working overtime, their rate was calculated as time-and-a-half based on the $2.30 an hour wage. However, federal law states that tipped workers must be paid time-and-a-half the minimum wage minus their tip credit.

The department also alleged that El Toro Loco paid kitchen workers, hosts and servers a fixed wage regardless of how many hours they worked, and refused overtime for a manager who didn’t meet exemption requirements.

“Overtime violations in the restaurant industry are far too common, particularly among vulnerable employees who don’t understand their rights to overtime compensation under federal law,” said Wage and Hour District Director Reed Trone in a new...



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