TRAFFORD, PA – Four federal investigations have led to the recovery of $383,183 in back wages and liquidated damages for 46 workers of a Trafford homecare service provider who denied them their full wages by not paying them overtime when the law required.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division conducted four investigations of From the Heart Companion Service LLC and found the employer neglected to pay overtime as required to the affected employees at four Pittsburgh-area locations for hours worked over 40 hours in a workweek, a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. To resolve the violations, From the Heart Companion Service LLC paid $191,591.71 in back wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages to workers at the following locations:

Employer Name

Location

# of Workers

Back Wages

From the Heart LLC

Trafford

25

$96,350.45

From the Heart Too LLC

Irwin

11

$53,896.89

From the Heart Laurel Highlands Inc.

Greensburg

2

$25,811.52

From the Heart Northwest Inc.

Erie

8

$15,532.85

“Professional caregivers provide vital support and services to some of the most vulnerable populations. They must receive all of their rightfully earned wages,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director John DuMont in Pittsburgh. “The outcome of our investigations at From the Heart Companion Service LLC should remind other employers to review their pay practices to avoid costly penalties. We encourage them to contact the Wage and Hour Division with any questions, and to avoid compliance issues.”

An investigation at the employer’s location in Hollidaysburg – operating as From the Heart at Penn State LLC – found no violations.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics found, in December 2021, that 716,000 healthcare and social assistance workers left their positions. As the aging U.S. population grows and demand for home healthcare services increases, employment for home health and personal care aides is projected to grow 33 percent from 2020 to 2030 – faster than the average for all occupations – adding about 1.1 million new jobs. These trends indicate that industry employers will find it more difficult to recruit and retain without being highly competitive and ensuring compliance with law governing workers’ rights.

“Healthcare workers are in great demand and facing record burnout,” added DuMont. “Healthcare employers whose pay practices comply with the law have a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting and retaining workers. Employers unsure about their legal obligations should contact the U.S. Department of Labor to prevent costly violations and ensure they are able to compete as an employer.”

Founded by company President and Owner Janis Mandich Durick in 2006, the Trafford-based From the Heart Companion Service LLC provides homecare for elderly and physically challenged individuals.

Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division, including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by the division. Workers can call the Wage and Hour Division confidentially with questions – regardless of their immigration status – and the department can speak with callers in more than 200 languages.

 

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