Mara Siegel , March 29, 2021
In mid-2020, the team at Barkan Meizlish, LLP reported on the new workplace normal. Namely, we analyzed how mandated temperature checks could lead employers into hot water. Between workplace ethics and potential FLSA violations, the institution of regular temperature checks and other COVID-19 conscious practices led to these concerns. Now, in early 2021, employees across the United States are finding themselves the victims of such FLSA violations.
In a recent California federal court filing, a tennis company came under fire when employees reported underpayment of wages. This underpayment seems to be a direct result of newly instituted COVID-19 safety measures, such as temperature checks. The company expected employees to undergo such measures prior to clocking in. The FLSA protects workers from their employers expecting work be done off the clock, including meetings, pre-shift duties, and post-shift duties. Temperature checks fall under this umbrella, as both statewide mandates and employer-instituted regulations require can require employees undergo this action.
This is not the first collective and class action suit to be filed in relation to unpaid wages and COVID-19 precautions. Apple, Walmart, and Converse have all been hit with similar filings. With large companies being hit left and right with actions regarding FLSA violations and COVID-19 safety checks, small company should take note.
Some Information on the FSLA:
Employees are protected by the Fair Labor Standards Act, also known as the FLSA. The FLSA ensures that employers are held accountable under federal law for proper payment of employees. In the case of mandated temperature checks, employees should anticipate payment for undergoing such an event before the technical start of their shift. As a required workplace action, employees should be compensated for their time.
If you are concerned that your workplace has not been properly paying you, an attorney may be able to help. Contact attorneys with Barkan Meizlish, LLP today to set up a free consultation.
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