CHICAGO, IL — A Chicago restaurant recently agreed to settle an unpaid overtime lawsuit with the Department of Labor to resolve claims that the company systematically underpaid dozens of current and former workers at its South Loop location. Under the terms of the settlement, Fabulous Freddies Italian Eatery and one of its named owners will compensate 58 workers a total of $339,418 in back pay and damages as compensation for violations of federal labor and wage laws.
An investigation by the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division showed that the defendants failed to comply with several statutes in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which sets national standards on minimum wage and overtime. Those violation include failure to pay workers minimum wage and overtime and to keep accurate payroll records of all the hours workers spent on the job.
Specifically, the investigation determined that Fabulous Freddies Italian Eatery and one of its owners paid some non-tipped employees a “training rate” of $3.75 per hour until management determined these individuals were fit enough to perform their duties. Under the FLSA, all workers must earn at least $7.25 per hour and earn one and a half times their average hourly rate of pay when working more than 40 hours per week.
“Failing to pay employees what they have legally earned allows companies to gain an unfair advantage over competitors that abide by the law,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Thomas Gauza, in Chicago. “Wage violations can be avoided, and we encourage employers to reach out to us for guidance.”
Unfortunately, this type of wage theft is all too common in the restaurant industry where some tip-earning employees may earn less than the hourly minimum wage but rely on tips from customers to earn a living. Sometimes, this unfamiliarity with labor and wage laws allows employers to take advantage of people trying to earn a living for themselves and their families. However, the FLSA gives workers the tools to hold bad actors accountable and file unpaid overtime lawsuits to recover their back pay with interest, damages, and attorneys fees.
Restaurant Worker Unpaid Overtime Lawsuit
Call (855) 754-2795 or complete the Free Unpaid Overtime Case Review form on the top right of this page if you believe that your wage rights are being violated under the FLSA. Our top-rated team of unpaid wage lawyers will evaluate your situation to determine your best course of action to help you seek justice.
Our office will also determine if it is in your best interest to file a lawsuit against your employer. Because strict time limitations apply for filing these types of claims, we advise you contact our experienced unpaid overtime wage attorneys at your earliest convenience and preserve your legal rights.