The option for forming class actions to sue a company exists to make reaping benefits easier for plaintiffs as well as to ensure that companies do not get away with illegal behavior simply because the individual claims are too small to warrant a court battle. However, the punitive aspect of the class actions is not always enough to deter companies from continuing and/or repeating their illegal practices.
Such is allegedly the case with Maxim Healthcare Services Inc., a corporation based in Maryland which provides in-home personal care, management and treatment of various conditions. Maxim Healthcare has hundreds of locations nationwide and, in 2012, an overtime class action lawsuit was filed against the company in Ohio by Jasmine Lawrence, a former Home Health Aide who was employed by the company until October 2012.
Lawrence’s overtime class actin lawsuit alleged that Maxim Healthcare had violated the Ohio Minimum Fair Wage Standards Act (OMFWSA) by failing to pay her and other employees the proper compensation for overtime. According to the OMFWSA, as well as the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, all employers in the United States are required to pay their hourly non-exempt employees no less than one and one-half times their normal hourly rate for each hour that they work in excess of 40 hours a week or eight hours per day. According to Lawrence’s lawsuit, she regularly worked more than 70 hours per week for Maxim Healthcare. Far from qualifying for overtime exempt status, Lawrence alleges that the majority of her duties consisted of general housekeeping duties.
Repeat offenders are common when it comes to violation of employment law and Maxim Healthcare allegedly appears to fit the bill. Recently, the company has faced a second overtime class action lawsuit filed by a healthcare recruiter who worked for Maxim Healthcare. Although the employee was paid a salary, the duties performed were allegedly not sufficient to meet the requirements for overtime exemption under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. Despite failing to qualify for overtime exemption, the employee allegedly worked an excess of 40 hours per week on a regular basis. The overtime class action lawsuit is seeking to represent all current and former salaried workers of Maxim Healthcare, including other healthcare recruiters, homecare recruiters, staffing recruiters, and senior recruiters who were employed by Maxim Healthcare at any time during the past three years.
Despite the fact that at least one of these plaintiffs was paid a salary by Maxim Healthcare, the Fair Labor Standards Ace has specific requirements for the types of duties an employee must perform in order to qualify for overtime exempt status. The first category is administrative, in which the employee must provide administrative support directly to an executive in order to qualify for the overtime exemption. For the second category, executive, an employee’s main responsibilities must consist of managing other employees. The third and final category is professional and mandates that an employee’s main responsibilities require a particular set of skills or education. None of the employees listed in the above overtime class action lawsuits appear to have fit the requirements for any of these categories.
The Illinois class action attorneys at the Chicago Overtime Law Center are investigating unpaid overtime claims against hospitals, senior and assisted living centers and large doctor and dental practices and chains for erasing or altering time sheets or time records, pressuring workers not to report or record overtime, and otherwise failing to pay workers for overtime and other wages. If you are the victim this practice call us at (312) 869-4095 or contact us online by filling in the form at the side of this blog.
The Chicago unpaid overtime lawyers at the Chicago Overtime Law Center have decades of experience fighting for wage earner’s rights. We have a team of Chicago unpaid overtime attorneys who focus on nationwide class action lawsuits and work out of Chicago and Oak Brook offices and prosecute claims for workers all over the Chicago area including Orland Park and Oswego. We protect unpaid workers who haven’t received overtime throughout the Chicago area including in DuPage, McHenry Kane and Cook Counties.
Our Waukegan and Evanston overtime lawyers are intimately familiar with the issues that arise during wage claim litigation, and we know the laws that govern overtime cases well. Many employers misclassify employees as being exempt from overtime laws and pay workers salaries instead of hourly wages in order to avoid paying them overtime. Some employers mistakenly classify employees as exempt and others intentionally do so in order to circumvent the law. In either case, workers do not receive the wages they should, and a lawsuit may be the only way to recover their earned wages.
The Chicago Overtime Law Center is based in Chicago and represents clients throughout the country who have not been paid for the overtime hours that they worked. If you believe that you are owed overtime wages, contact one of our Chicago class action attorneys by phone at (312) 869-4095 or through our online form.