MILWAUKEE — Wisconsin-based Ministry Health Care faces an unpaid overtime lawsuit from employees alleging their employer forced them to work during lunch breaks, stay nearby the hospital on call while off the clock and perform work without pay.
It marks the third such overtime wage lawsuit the healthcare provider has been slapped with in just the last two years.
Owned by parent company Affinity Health System, Ministry is accused of requiring its hourly health care workers to stay close to their job during unpaid breaks and return to work in case they are needed.
The plaintiffs allege they were not paid during this time, effectively controlling their personal time and skewing any possible overtime the employees may have been able to accrue for their work.
The two lead patients, who worked as surgical technicians in operating rooms, allege the practice affected possibly hundreds of workers just like them employed by Ministry Health Care. Plaintiffs filed their suit under the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), seeking a trial by jury for their damages.
In June 2015, Ministry Health Care settled a similar lawsuit alleging unpaid breaks and other wages at its St. Joseph’s hospital in Madison. That suit also alleged that due to the extra work employees were expected to perform, some workers earned less than the federally mandated $7.25 per hour pay under the FLSA.
The plaintiffs in that case settled their claim for $1 million and Ministry Health was forced to pay an additional $300,000 in attorney’s fees. Another suit was filed against Ministry Health in August 2015 which is still working its way through the court system.
Under the FLSA, employees must be paid one and a half times their regularly hourly rate for every hour worked over 40 hours in a week. Employees who feel their rights have been knowingly violated under the FLSA may be able to recover two-years worth of back overtime pay and in some cases three-years. In addition to back pay, courts may award plaintiffs other compensatory damages and attorney’s fees to help cover the costs of litigation.
Healthcare Wage Lawsuits
Call (855) 754-2795 or complete the Free Unpaid Overtime Case Review form on the top right of this page if you feel that you and and other employees 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.