CWS 3.0: February 20, 2013

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Clients to Pay $424,000 to Workers

A group of 15 Boston-area restaurants agreed to pay $424,000 in back wages and liquidated damages to 409 employees to resolve allegation the workers were underpaid by the restaurants and a contract labor provider, the U.S. Department of Labor reported.

The restaurant owners — Patrick Lyons and Edward Sparks — will also issue a public statement warning fellow restaurant owners of the hazards of using contract labor providers that do not comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act, according to the department.

Workers were paid straight time instead of time-and-a-half for hours worked in excess of 40 per week, according to the department. The bulk of the underpayments were paid by Superbrite Professional Cleaning, a separate company later known as Excel Management.

“Utilizing contract labor providers does not absolve employers from their responsibility of complying with the FLSA and paying workers the wages they are legally due,” said George Rioux, district director for the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division in Boston.

Restaurants involved include Alibi Bar & Lounge, Back Bay Social Club, Bleacher Bar, The Estate, Game On, Harvard Gardens, Kings Boston, Kings Dedham, La Verdad, The Lansdowne Pub, Lucky’s Lounge, Scampo, Sonsie, Sweetwater Café and Towne Stove & Spirits.

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