According to the Ventura County Star, the U.S. Department of Labor is suing an Oxnard nursing home over allegations that it failed to pay at least 24 workers overtime and terminated an employee who spoke openly about wage issues to investigators.
The paper reported that the lawsuit, filed in federal district court in Los Angeles, alleges Oxnard Manor Healthcare Center “made employees work off-the-clock, required them to deduct hours from their time cards and didn’t pay time-and-a-half for work hours in excess of 40 a week.”
The nursing home also reportedly claimed that some workers were exempt from overtime pay illegally. The nursing home also reportedly tried to silence one employee, Margot Sanchez, who was being interviewed by investigators about the alleged violations.
“She was terminated because the employer believed she cooperated with us in our investigation and she spoke with investigators about wage violations,” Kimchi Bui, district director of the labor department’s wage and hour division said, according to the County Star.
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Several issues will need to be worked out in this particular lawsuit. Wage and overtime claims, as well as whistleblower and employer retaliation claims can be resolved through the court. Federal and state laws protect employees who “tell” on an employer because he or she reasonably believes that an employer committed an illegal act.
If you have seen your employer conduct an illegal act or mistreat workers, and you are not sure how to handle the situation, contact our attorneys today to discuss your case by calling (310) 273-3180. You have rights and you need to be protected.
Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob– Los Angeles employment attorneys