Every workplace is required by law to compensate workers properly, based on the number of hours they actually worked. These regulations also require additional overtime pay for work beyond forty hours. If an employer consistently engages in practices where improper records are kept or fabricated, workers who are affected can file a lawsuit to receive their legitimate wages.
The government of Jefferson Parish, Louisiana is being sued for not paying workers properly at an animal shelter they operate.
Animal shelter failed to properly pay workers and calculate wages
The lawsuit was brought by a former manager who claimed that the shelter regularly engaged in illegal practices where workers were not paid for overtime or additional hours beyond their standard shifts. The suit also claims that the shelter failed to keep records which accurately reflected the number of hours that employees worked and the proper wages they were owed.
She had worked at the shelter starting in January of 2013. In addition to her normally scheduled hours, the plaintiff claims that she also worked nights and weekends on a regular basis, but never received any kind of overtime or additional compensation. She also responded to emergency calls and emails all through the night, as well as arranging to have animals admitted to a local veterinary hospital in Metairie.
The language in the initial court filings states that the shelter engaged in these practices so openly for years, that all of the employees were well aware of what was going on. The initial complaint claims that these illegal practices occurred from at least 2013 until the time the case was filed in early 2020.
The total amount of the unpaid wage claim will be amended after the discovery process is completed. The plaintiff does have various emails and other records to prove her wages, but her labor attorney believes much more information will be discovered related to widespread improper wages in the coming months. The total damages would equal double the amount of wages she was owed, in addition to interest, attorney’s fees, and court costs.
Jefferson Parish declined to comment on any ongoing litigation, which they claim is standard policy. The plaintiff in this case had herself been the subject of an earlier investigation related to retaliation and employee harassment. The plaintiff was previously terminated by the animal shelter in an unrelated incident where employees claimed she retaliated against them for reporting lapses in proper animal care.
Speak with an attorney in your city today
There are lawyers who are licensed to practice in Louisiana who focus their practice on claims related to workplace issues like improper pay, discrimination, and harassment. To learn more about a lawsuit or other remedies, contact:
3960 Government St., Baton Rouge, LA 70806