In the case of Diflavis v. Choice Hotels International, the plaintiff claimed that she did not receive the overtime pay that she deserved, which violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act. On behalf of herself, and other employees who made similar claims, the plaintiff filed a class action and collective action claim against the hotel chain. The defendant argued that the Complaint against them should be dismissed because the plaintiff failed to adequately demonstrate that Choice Hotels was a joint employer in the case. In addition, they requested that the collective and class action claims be stricken from the complaint. The Court denied both requests.
From early June 2018 to late August 2018, the plaintiff worked as a full-time housekeeper for Clarion Hotel & Conference Center, making an hourly rate of $9.00. All Clarion Hotel housekeepers are assigned 16 rooms to service, which includes making the beds, providing clean towels, vacuuming, and general cleaning. For any rooms serviced beyond the 16 that were assigned, the housekeeper earns $5.00 per room. While housekeepers are scheduled to work five, eight and a half-hour shifts each week, they are expected to continue working until all 16 rooms have been serviced.
In order to service all 16 rooms, housekeepers often worked up to 12 hours per day without taking a break for meals. The plaintiff claimed that she worked an average of 50 to 55 hours per week, but she was only paid for 36 hours per week. She alleged that she was not paid the overtime rate of $13.50 per hour for the number of hours she worked that exceeded 40 hours. In addition, she alleged that the defendants were aware of the violations, and that they calculated housekeepers’ pay based on the number of work hours and rooms serviced that supervisors entered into payroll, rather than the actual number of hours worked and rooms serviced. The plaintiff also argued that Choice Hotels and Rama Construction Company are joint employers in the case.
The defendant argued that the joint employer allegations were flawed because the plaintiff did not satisfy the test for a joint employer, and she failed to specify whether her primary employer was Rama or Choice Hotels. However, the court ruled in favor of the plaintiff, saying that Choice Hotels did not meet the standard required to strike the plaintiff’s collective and class action claims.
Philadelphia Employment Lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green, P.C. Represent Workers with Unpaid Overtime Claims
If you have not received overtime pay for working more than 40 hours in a given week, you are urged to contact the Philadelphia employment lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green, P.C. To schedule a confidential consultation, call us today at 215-574-0600 or contact us online. Our offices are conveniently located in Center City Philadelphia, where we serve clients from Southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.