Intertek USA Inc, a Houston based inspection and certification company, has witnessed some trouble on the legal front recently. The company has been accused that their company’s overtime policy of a “fluctuating workweek” (a/k/a “Chinese overtime“) actually reduced the amount of overtime paid to company inspectors. This has allegedly resulted in a violation of minimum wage law stated in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

Intertek provides services such as laboratory testing, cargo inspection, and certification services for companies around the globe. With more than 1,000 labs in operation, in over 100 countries, Intertek employs inspectors worldwide. The lawsuit has been filed representing current and former employees of the company. The plaintiffs are to be represented by Kennedy Hodges, who says he estimates that hundreds of Intertek employees have fallen victim to Intertek’s pay rate negligence. 

Typically, overtime pay is compensated by paying every hour worked after 40, one-and-one half times standard pay. However, not all companies use the day-rate method. These companies like Intertek, enforce the fluctuating workweek. The pay method of a fluctuating workweek was created to follow FLSA guidelines, while saving the employer money. Fluctuating workweeks require employers to pay workers a weekly salary that is equal to or greater than minimum wage, when divided among weekly worked hours. Therefore, when an employee divides their weekly salary by the amount of hours they worked, the resulting number should total more than the minimum wage. 

In the details of the lawsuit, it states that Intertek non-exempt inspectors logged an average of 90 hours per week. The suit also states that even with a flat rate wage every week, Intertek employees were still making less than minimum wage. Failing to pay employees the minimum wage is a violation of FLAS rules, and results in legal consequences. Employees who filed the claim against Intertek are seeking to recover damages for all unpaid overtime, lawyer fees, and any additional expenses stated by the Fair Labor Standards Act. If you find yourself in a similar position and deserve your overtime pay compensation, contact us today.