HOUSTON – The U.S. Department of Labor recovered $460,857 in back wages and damages after federal investigators found a Houston supermarket failed to pay 104 workers overtime wages.An investigation by the department’s Wage and Hour Division found that Y. S. Lee Company Inc. – operating as Guanajuato Supermarket – paid its employees straight time rates instead of time-and-one-half their regular rate of pay for hours worked over 40 in a workweek, as required by the Fair Labor Standards Act.Investigators found the supermarket, which includes a restaurant, meat market and bread store, also failed to keep accurate pay records as required by federal law. “Employers have a legal obligation to pay workers correctly for all the hours they work, including time-and-one-half their regular rate of pay for hours over 40 in a workweek. When they fail to do so, they violate the law and face having to pay back wages and liquidated damages to their employees,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Nicole Sellers in Houston. “We are committed to ensuring essential protections for workers and providing clear and confidential compliance assistance to any employee or employer with questions.”The Wage and Hour Division enforces laws governing pay practices and other labor standards, including the Fair Labor Standards Act, and determines if employers have misclassified employees as independent contractors and denied them critical benefits and worker protections. 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 and employers can contact the division confidentially at its toll-free number, 1-866-4-US-WAGE (487-9243). The division protects workers regardless of immigration status and can communicate with workers in more than 200 languages.Download the agency’s new Timesheet App, which is available in English and Spanish for Android and Apple devices, to ensure hours and pay are accurate.Lea en Español  

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