LinkedIn settlement: importance of speaking up about wage and hour laws

Every year, many companies are found skirting wage and hour laws-even large, popular ones such as the California-based networking company LinkedIn.

The well-liked company-now with an estimated 300+ million member-recently agreed to pay roughly $6 million in damages to employees for failing to pay them appropriate wages under the law.

The investigation

According to the Department of Labor, the company failed to pay employees proper overtime during the period of February 2012 to February 2014 as stipulated under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

The FLSA, as it's known, is a law that stipulates certain employment mandates. One of the requirements includes a mandate about overtime pay. In general terms, the law stipulates that employers are required to pay employees 1.5 times their hourly rate of pay for every hour worked over 40 hours in a given week.

The LinkedIn employees affected are located throughout the country including California. Many are also located in Illinois, Nebraska and New York.

According to the U.S. Labor Department, the error was due to a recording issue. The company failed to adequately record the total number of hours worked by various employees and, as a result, many were not paid accordingly.

The Vice President of Corporate Communications at LinkedIn indicates that the tracking was due to a technical problem and a failure to have "the right tools in place."

David Weil, administrator of the Wage and Hour Division at the Labor Department, stated shortly after the announcement that LinkedIn had copiously cooperated with the department and has accepted a settlement offer.

Unfortunately, not all companies embrace such "inadvertent mistakes" link LinkedIn. Many companies often skirt wage and hours laws and other types of workplace regulations in order to meet bottom lines, regardless of the fairness to its employees.

According to Susana Blanco, District Director for the Labor Department in San Francisco, hourly employees in the United States working off the clock is fairly prevalent.

Legal recourse for wage and hour violations

Sadly, regardless of so-called cultural norms, the law is straightforward. Employers who are labeled as non-exempt and are working more than 8 hours in a day or 40 hours in a week without receiving the proper time-and-a-half pay are encouraged to speak with the attorneys at Barrera & Associates. Barrera & Associates has extensive experience in wage and hour claims similar to those suffered by the LinkedIn employees set forth above.