Case Update: January 23, 2013
Wage and overtime lawsuit seeks collective-action status.
|Read Federal Case Here>|
Check back often for updates. We answer these common questions below:
- What is the Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments case about?
- What are we claiming to recover?
- How do I join this case?
- Do I have to pay anything?
- Who is eligible to join the Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments lawsuit?
- What time frame is covered?
- How do I prove how much I am owed?
- Will I be fired for joining this lawsuit?
- Which Locations are Included?
- How do I get more information about the Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments case?
1. What is the Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments lawsuit about?
Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments’ (“the Apartments”) housekeepers and maintenance workers filed a collective action lawsuit against the Apartments for unpaid wages. The Apartments’ employees are paid an hourly wage. Their work consists of maintaining the Apartment complexes and responding to residents’ maintenance requests. Maintenance technicians and housekeepers also prepare units for new tenants, and housekeepers do general cleaning of the complexes.
Specifically, the employees receive a detailed daily task list from the Apartments. All the tasks involve manual labor. For example, tasks include repairing leaking air conditioning units, repairing overflowing toilets, cleaning, and/or rectifying power outages. The maintenance workers are also responsible for the day-to-day operations of their respective apartment complexes, such as collecting trash and cleaning common areas.
While the employees routinely worked in excess of forty (40) hours each week, they are only paid for their first forty (40) hours. As such, for the hours they work over forty (40), they received no compensation at all. Consequently, the more hours over forty (40) each employee works, the less their hourly rate is.
There are several violations in this case. First, the employees are not being compensated for their hours worked over forty (40). The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) which governs wage and hour law, states that an employer shall pay time and a half for hours worked over forty (40). Clearly, since the Apartments are not paying anything at all for hours worked over forty (40), there is a violation. Second, when dividing the total compensation per week by the total number of hours worked per week, the rate of pay falls below the federally mandated minimum wage. The FLSA currently mandates that employers pay at least $7.25 per hour. Here, the Apartments violated this law. When the maintenance workers and housekeepers worked unpaid overtime, it actually deflated their rate of pay. By way of example, if a Housekeeper works for $7.25 per hour and gets paid $290.00 ($7.24 x 40hours) per week but actually works 50 hours per week, then the true rate of pay is $5.80 per hour ($290.00 ÷ 50 hours). As you can see, by not paying the housekeepers and maintenance workers for hours over forty (40), the Apartments also committed a minimum wage violation. Third, the Apartments did not keep accurate records of total hours worked. The FLSA mandates that the employer keep accurate records of hours worked. Here, the Apartments did not keep accurate records of the hours over forty (40) the employees worked. As a result, the Apartments are in violation of yet another FLSA law.
The lawsuit claims Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments owe all maintenance workers and housekeepers, employed for the last three years, back pay for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek at the proper overtime rate, back wages at the minimum wage rate, liquidated damages, attorneys’ fees, and court costs.
2. What are we claiming to recover?
The employees seek to recover compensation for their unpaid overtime, liquidated damages, and attorney's fees as required by the FLSA for the past three years before this lawsuit was filed.
3. How do I join this case?
To make a claim in this action under federal law, you must complete a Consent Form and return it to us for filing with the Court.
4. Do I have to pay anything?
We are handling this case on a contingency basis. This means we will only be paid if the lawsuit is successful in obtaining relief either through a settlement or a final judgment, and that payment will only come out of that settlement or final judgment. If we make no recovery for you, you owe us nothing. Our firm advances all of the case expenses and will request reimbursement only in the event we make a recovery for the employees.
5. Who is eligible to join the Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments lawsuit?
This lawsuit seeks collective-action certification under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). If granted, this means all other similarly situated Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and/or Stanford Oaks Apartments employees may be able to recover unpaid overtime and minimum wage compensation.
6. What time frame is covered?
There is a federal statute of limitations in this case that allows you to recover pay for overtime hours worked within two (2) years of joining the lawsuit by completing a Consent Form and returning it to us. If we can prove the company willfully violated the law, the statute of limitations may be extended to three (3) years.
7. How do I prove how much I am owed?
When the employer does not maintain accurate records of the hours you worked, courts permit the employee to make a good-faith estimate of hours worked. Here we will request records from the company and analyze them to help determine how much we claim you are owed. If you do have records, however, you should not throw them away.
8. Will I be fired for joining this lawsuit?
It is illegal for an employer to retaliate against you for joining this lawsuit. Retaliation can include terminating you, changing your hours, reducing your pay, changing your position, or taking any other action in retaliation for joining this lawsuit.
The law protects you from retaliation for asserting your rights and, if you suffer retaliation, you may be able to assert additional claims. If you currently work for Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and/or Stanford Oaks Apartments and you feel you are the victim of retaliation for being in this lawsuit, contact us immediately so we may bring this to the attention of the Court. Our firm and the courts take claims of retaliation seriously.
9. Which locations are included?
This case is based out of Texas, but we believe that these illegal practices are happening nationwide and invite all Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, Stanford Oaks Apartments, and sister complexes employees to contact us.
10. How do I get more information about the Ashford Court Apartments, Ashford Pointe Apartments, and Stanford Oaks Apartments case?
If you would like more information that about this case, please contact the attorneys at our firm assigned to prosecute this case: 1-855-947-0707.