Pennsylvania-Based Healthcare Company Agrees to Pay More Than $250,000 for Failing to Pay Massachusetts Workers
Restitution to More Than 1,900 Massachusetts Employees Who Were Not Paid Properly for Work; Company Provides Services to Hundreds of Massachusetts Healthcare Facilities
BOSTON – A Pennsylvania-based healthcare company that provides services to hundreds of healthcare facilities in Massachusetts has agreed to pay more than $250,000 in restitution and penalties for failing to pay more than 1,900 Massachusetts workers properly, Attorney General Maura Healey announced today.
Healthcare Services Group, Inc. (HSG) has agreed to pay restitution to 1,931 Massachusetts employees for hours worked between July 2012 and July 2015. The vast majority of these workers made less than $11 per hour and more than 100 of them were underpaid for 35 hours or more.
“Every employer in Massachusetts is responsible for paying workers the wages they have earned,” said AG Healey. “We are pleased that through this settlement, HSG will pay these low-wage workers the money they are owed and that the company has installed new systems to ensure workers are paid properly in the future.”
HSG is a corporation based in Pennsylvania that provides housekeeping, laundry, dining, and nutrition services to more than 250 healthcare facilities in Massachusetts.
The AG’s Office began an investigation after the AG’s Fair Labor Division received complaints from three HSG employees alleging non-payment of wages for hours worked at the Wingate at Reading Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center located in Reading, MA.
The AG’s investigation found that inaccuracies in the company’s timekeeping and payroll systems prevented employees’ hours from being recorded and processed in the payroll system. Due to these clerical errors, between July 2012 and July 2015, the company failed to pay employees the correct wages for the full amount of hours worked.
The company has since changed its practices and implemented a new electronic system with safeguards for checking time adjustments installed at multiple levels of management.
HSG has also agreed to pay for costs, as to be determined, associated with locating former employees who are restitution recipients.
The Massachusetts Wage Act requires employers to pay workers for wages earned within six days of the end of the pay period.
AG Healey’s Fair Labor Division is responsible for enforcing state laws regulating the payment of wages, including prevailing wage, minimum wage and overtime laws.
Workers who believe that their rights have been violated in their workplace can call the office’s Fair Labor Hotline at (617) 727-3465. More information about the state’s wage and hour laws is also available in multiple languages at www.mass.gov/ago/fairlabor.
This matter was handled by Assistant Attorney General Andrew H. Cahill and Investigator Leah Lucier, both of AG Healey’s Fair Labor Division.