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Regis Settles Class Action Wage Suit by Salon Workers in California

Regis Corp. has agreed to settle a class action overtime and minimum wage lawsuit filed by its salon employees in the amount of $5.75 million. The employees, who worked as stylists in the company’s California salons, claim that Regis violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) when it failed to pay them minimum wage and overtime for performing certain duties. Although the stylists are normally paid by commission for each styling service they perform, the suit alleged that Regis failed to pay the stylists when they are performing other duties apart from providing service to a discrete customer. These duties include cleaning the salon, organizing product displays, doing laundry, folding towels, wiping down shelves, answering customer phone calls, setting appointments, and cleaning the bathroom.

Under FLSA, service establishments who pay employees on a commission basis must ensure that they are paid at least the federal minimum wage for all compensable hours worked. If the total commission pay earned by employees in a pay period does not meet the federal minimum wage, then employers must compensate them to make up the difference. Under the law, compensable work is defined broadly, and it includes all time spent doing work that is necessarily and primarily for the benefit of the employer’s business.

With regard to overtime, employees who are paid by commission are also entitled to overtime pay unless they qualify to be exempted under FLSA. For the exemption to apply, the employee must:

·      Be employed by a retail or service establishment;

·      Be paid at a rate that exceeds one and one-half times the minimum wage for every hour worked in a workweek in which overtime hours are also worked;

·      Have more than half of his or her total earnings in a period consist of commissions.

More often than not, employees are covered by FLSA’s minimum wage and overtime provisions even if an employer claims they are exempted. Dejban Law can help you determine if you are entitled to additional compensation if you believe you are being deprived of your wage rights. Contact us now by email at info@dejbanlaw.com or by phone us at (818) 325-3820 for a free and confidential initial consultation.