A group of home health aides will receive a $4 million settlement to resolve a suit that claims they weren’t paid all the wages a New York company owed them.
After granting preliminary approval in June, a U.S. District judge granted final approval to the class and collective settlement Tuesday. In 2016, plaintiff Allison Hypolite brought the suit against Home Health Care Services of New York Inc., also known as HCS Healthcare, which has not admitted wrongdoing.
The suit claims the company failed to pay the home health workers for all of the hours they clocked during 24-hour shifts and failed to pay aides time-and-a-half for overtime when they worked more than 40 hours per week.
Additionally, Hypolite alleges she and her colleges were denied appropriate breaks and reimbursement for work travel. If true, such allegations violate state law and the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.
The judge’s order also agreed to grant the plaintiff’s attorneys more than $450,000 in fees, plus more than $6,000 in expenses and costs.
In September, the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) fined several home care agencies following an investigation into widespread reports of noncompliance.
Launched in July 2017, the investigation involved 42 home care agencies, which combined employ more than 50,000 workers, roughly one-third of all home care aides in New York City, according to DCA. More than 500 of those employees were interviewed, while DCA also reviewed a plethora of agency documents.
The investigation found caregivers’ sick leave requests were often denied or restricted. Additionally, it found workers were also denied minimum wage and overtime to which they were entitled.
Ultimately, that investigation yielded more than $42,000 in restitution for home care aides and more than $23,000 in fines.
Written by Bailey Bryant