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  • Writer's pictureVicki Wilmarth

Underpayment of Wages Bites Amarillo Non-profit



Advo Companies, Inc., a worthy local charity that trains and helps people with developmental disabilities find work, was recently investigated by the United States Department of Labor for underpayment of wages to 134 workers. The company had to repay $52,497 in back wages because, among other mistakes, it miscalculated the special wage rate allowed to be paid to their employees.


I don’t know the facts of this particular DOL investigation, but I know Advo Companies has been providing outstanding vocational services to disabled adults and operating group homes in Amarillo for more than 30 years. I seriously doubt that any of the wage problems discovered by the DOL were intentional underpayments. But Advo’s difficulties provide an example of how a very well-meaning employer can easily run afoul of the notoriously difficult Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) requirements.


For most employers, the Fair Labor Standards Act “simply” requires payment of minimum wage and overtime if an employee works more than 40 hours in any one workweek. But there are many ways for an employer to unintentionally break this law:


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