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Sound policy triggers suit anyway

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in Human Resources

The Pocono Medical Center in East Stroudsburg was following a special “8 and 80” pay plan permitted for health care providers under Section 7j of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) when it was slapped with an overtime lawsuit anyway.

The “8 and 80” plan lets health care providers calculate overtime based on more than eight hours a day or 80 hours in 14 days, instead of the standard 40 hours in seven days. The lawsuit alleges that employees worked through breaks without pay, however, which violates the FLSA.

The hospital decided to settle because of “the uncertainties, time and litigation fees and expense inherent in further litigation.” Hundreds of employees who worked there between February 1, 2005, and February 1, 2007, will share a $280,000 settlement.

Final note: Back-wage lawsuits are hot. Letting unsalaried employees work through breaks is a liability no employer can afford.

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