December 1, 2023


Business&Finance Specialists

Organization operator compensated ex-worker with 91,000 pennies. That’s retaliation, feds claim in lawsuit.

3 min read

After a former personnel of A Okay Walker Autoworks filed a complaint with point out labor regulators in 2021 accusing the operator of failing to concern his final paycheck of $915, he acquired an unwelcome shock: a mountain of 91,000 pennies, included in oil, dumped in his driveway. 

But the employee, Andreas Flaten, may possibly be getting the past snicker. The U.S. Department of Labor has submitted a lawsuit against the Peachtree, Ga-based mostly car restore store and owner Miles Walker after choosing that the stunt amounted to retaliation. 

In accordance to the government’s grievance, Walker made the decision to shell out Flaten in pennies within just several hours of studying that he had contacted regulators above his missing paycheck.

“How can you make this dude realize what a disgusting illustration of a human being he is…,” Walker stated, the Labor Division alleged in the go well with. “[Y]ou know what? I’ve got a good deal of pennies I’l use them.”

A employee partaking with the Labor Office is secured beneath federal law, according to the agency. “Employees are entitled to obtain information about their rights in the place of work and get hold of the wages they acquired without having anxiety of harassment or intimidation,” an formal with the agency’s wage and hour division in Atlanta stated in a assertion Wednesday. 

The Labor Division also established that Walker had illegally deprived other workers at the shop of additional time pay back, as properly as failing to keep appropriate fork out and do the job documents. It is inquiring a U.S. district court in Georgia to bar the defendants from any foreseeable future breaches of the Reasonable Labor Expectations Act, such as retaliation and extra time violations.

A assertion posted on A Ok Walker Autoworks’ web-site, labeled “pennies,” explained the business asked the Labor Section if it was authorized to shell out Flaten “in dollars of any denomination” and that the company did not provide specific guidance (The business eliminated the statement from its web-site on Friday.) The maintenance store also denied placing oil on the coins. 

“There have been particularly 100,003 pennies, 750 dimes, 2 quarters, a nickel, and his pay back stub in the pile,” the article states. “That is a lot a lot more than what we had been lawfully obligated to give him. Why so a lot far more? We figured that he would have had ample intelligence to just have the pennies counted and exchanged.”

An worker of the automobile store declined to remark and claimed she did not know how to get hold of Walker.

Following the Labor Division submitted its criticism, Flaten informed Organization Insider he would inspire other personnel who really feel they are wrongly denied their wages to file a criticism.

“They certainly need to not be worried to achieve out,” he told the news outlet. “Talk up. You should not be peaceful about it. Due to the fact if you happen to be tranquil about it, it is really just likely to continue on to happen to you and every person else.”