Williamsburg Restaurant Faces $102,590 Overtime Pay Violation Penalties, Department of Labor Reveals

by Ella

A prominent restaurant situated on Richmond Road in Williamsburg has been found liable for intentionally withholding over $120,000 in overtime wages from 62 of its employees, according to the Department of Labor.

The Department of Labor (DOL) made a significant announcement on Thursday, disclosing that it had secured a consent judgment in a Virginia federal court against Food for Thought restaurant. The judgment entails that Food for Thought is obligated to remunerate $102,590 in back wages, an equivalent amount in liquidated damages, and an additional $50,034 in civil penalties.


Investigations carried out by the Wage and Hour Division within the Department of Labor revealed that FFT Restaurant Group LLC, the operating entity behind Food for Thought, along with its owner, Howard Hopkins, paid kitchen staff straight time rates for all hours worked, effectively depriving them of overtime compensation. Additionally, the DOL claims that Hopkins and FFT failed to maintain precise records of employees’ work hours and neglected to display federal minimum wage posters, which is a statutory requirement.


Roberto Melendez, District Director of the Wage and Hour Division, remarked, “Our investigation found that the employer did not pay some employees their hard-earned overtime pay, which is unacceptable. Many restaurant workers struggle to make ends meet and they deserve to be paid for all hours worked. Employers who shortchange their employees will be held accountable.”


As part of the resolution, Food for Thought has been prohibited from engaging in any future violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act.




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