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Georgia restaurant sued for overtime pay

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) establishes standards for wages and hours that employers are expected to follow, including overtime pay, child labor laws and time-and-a-half earnings. One Georgia restaurant has recently been accused of violating FLSA, and a former cook has filed a federal lawsuit in an attempt to get the overtime pay that he feels he is owed. According to reports, disputes about overtime are not uncommon in Atlanta, particularly for workers in service-oriented positions.

The former cook, who was employed at Kirkwood Bar and Grill between Oct. and Dec. 2012, filed his lawsuit on Jan. 30 with the U.S. District Court in Atlanta. The suit alleges that he typically worked 70 hours per week and only received $10 per hour without any overtime pay. In addition to the overtime, the man is seeking damages equal to the overtime pay, plus legal fees.

The 18-page suit lists the restaurant and the owner as defendants, and they have 21 days to respond once they are served. So far, the owner has not commented on the litigation. He reportedly has been involved in previous disputes and lawsuits with the community regarding the operations of the restaurant.

The FLSA is meant to protect workers and ensure that they are being paid fairly, as well as help employers by establishing hour and wage guidelines. Georgia workers who believe that their employer violated FLSA may wish to explore their legal options for getting overtime pay or other wages they may be owed. In addition, employers who are accused of not following FLSA guidelines may take steps to defend themselves against such allegations.

Source: East Atlanta, GA Patch, "Kirkwood Bar & Grill Hit With Wage Lawsuit," Peralte Paul, Feb. 6, 2013

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