WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Labor announced that the end of its Payroll Audit Independent Determination program launched by the department’s Wage and Hour Division in 2018, effective Jan. 29.
The program allowed employers to self-report federal minimum wage and overtime violations under the Fair Labor Standards Act to avoid litigation, penalties or damages, and prohibited affected workers from taking any private action on the identified violations.
“Workers are entitled to every penny they have earned,” said Wage and Hour Division Principal Deputy Administrator Jessica Looman. “The Payroll Audit Independent Determination program deprived workers of their rights and put employers that play by the rules at a disadvantage. The U.S. Department of Labor will rigorously enforce the law, and we will use all the enforcement tools we have available.”
The division provides significant outreach and educational resources for employers seeking assistance to understand their responsibilities to comply with wage and hour laws. These resources are sufficient for helping employers comply without relieving them of their legal obligations, and ensure that workers understand their rights.
The roofing industry is not immune to FLSA violations regarding overtime. In May 2019, an Oregon roofing company had to pay $73,000 to 26 employees for violating overtime laws, while in March 2020, an Idaho roofing contractor paid $48,206 to 68 employees for overtime violations.
The Wage and Hour Division investigates FLSA violations to verify that employers comply with their obligations. When enforcement actions are necessary, the FLSA provides for the payment of back wages and liquidated damages to workers and the assessment of civil money penalties when the agency determines the violations to be repeat or willful. The FLSA also gives workers the right to pursue private legal action against employers for back wages and damages.