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Bryant Whitten, LLP

Union members claim overtime pay was miscalculated for years

Just because California employees are receiving overtime does not mean that it has been calculated correctly. These types of errors can cost workers a significant amount of money over time that could have been used for their families. A group of workers who are members of the Civil Service Employees Association in another state have filed a federal lawsuit against the county for which they worked, claiming that they were not paid correctly when they worked overtime.

The union president of the CSEA stated that the number of plaintiffs could rise significantly as nearly 3,000 other union members are eligible to receive overtime. Allegedly, all of the non-discretionary bonuses that the members were eligible for were not factored into the regularly hourly pay before the overtime was calculated; instead, the bonus payments came after the overtime had already been calculated. Some of the bonuses include hazard pay, longevity pay and shift differential compensation.

According to the complaint, because the overtime was incorrectly calculated, the members were not only missing out on money, they were also going to have lower pensions. Not all of the plaintiffs who were affected held positions in law enforcement. Other affected plaintiffs included civilian county jail staff as well as a sewage treatment plant operator.

The lawsuit is accusing the county of violating the Fair Labor Standards act because the bonuses were not included in the base hourly rate before calculating overtime. The suit is seeking that the plaintiffs receive pension contributions and back pay that could range anywhere from $300 to over $16,000 depending on the position the member held and his or her years of experience. California workers should not have to suffer if their employers engage in illegal acts; workers are within their legal rights to file claims to try to receive the wages they believe are owed to them.


Source: myinforms.com, "Nassau County improperly calculated CSEA overtime, suit contends", Dec. 26, 2015

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