DUDLEY, MA — A Dudley, Massachusetts-packaging company recently agreed to settle an unpaid overtime lawsuit with federal regulators to resolve claims that the defendant failed to properly compensate hundreds of current and former workers under federal wage and labor laws. As part of the agreement, Shield Packaging Co. Inc. will compensate an estimated 205 employees a total of over $420,000 in unpaid wages and liquidated damages and further agreed to refrain from any other violations in the future.
According to the Department of Labor, Shield Packaging Co. failed to pay employees all their due wages from April 2015 to October 2016 for the extra time it took workers to put on and take off protective clothing necessary for the employees to perform their work duties. Often referred to as donning and doffing, this time spent every shift can add up to significant overtime that many employers attempt to avoid paying their workers.
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers must pay workers one and a half times their average hourly rate of pay when working above the 40-hour per week overtime threshold. When employers fail to live up to their legal duties, wage theft victims have the right to file unpaid overtime lawsuits to recover their back pay.
“This cooperative federal-state effort and the resulting settlements compensate these employees for wages they rightfully earned but did not receive. As the Department of Labor enforces the Fair Labor Standards Act, we encourage all employers to take advantage of the Division’s education and outreach efforts to help them understand their responsibilities and how to properly comply with the law,” said the Wage and Hour Division’s Northeast Regional Administrator Mark Watson Jr.
The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division conducted its investigation with assistance from the Fair Labor Division of the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office, uncovering rampant violations of both federal and state labor laws. In addition to repaying the hundreds of workers, the defendant also agreed to settle claims with state investigators for $564,000 in wages and penalties.
Packing Company Unpaid Overtime Lawsuit
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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.