Our employment law firm filed a Collective and Class Action Lawsuit against LHC Group, Inc. for the alleged failure to compensate home healthcare employees for time spent traveling between clients’ residences in the same workday.
The case for unpaid overtime is pending against Defendant LHC Group, Inc. (“LHC”). LHC is a national provider of in-home healthcare services that operates throughout Ohio where it employed Plaintiff and other hourly healthcare employees, such as Direct Support Professionals, Support Specialists, Caregivers, Home Health Aides (HHAs), Aides, Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs), State Tested Nursing Assistants (STNAs), etc.
The Complaint claims that LHC required its healthcare employees to visit multiple patients or clients throughout the day and, as such, required them to drive between residences. However, these employees allege that LHC did not pay them for such travel time despite LHC’s actual and/or constructive knowledge of such travel in violation of federal and state overtime laws.
The FLSA requires an employer to pay employees for their work. Drive time is compensable when it occurs after the first principal activities and before the last principal activities of the workday (i.e., drive time takes place during the continuous workday rather than merely in preparation for it or winding down from it). While driving to and from the workplace at the beginning and end of the day, for example, would not be compensable, time spent driving between different patients’ or clients’ residences during the workday is compensable. Indeed, travel between clients’ homes or from jobsite to jobsite during a day is work time and must be counted as hours worked. To the extent that the travel time results in an employee working more than 40 hours in a workweek, the employee has unpaid overtime.
The Complaint states these job duties were integral and indispensable to the healthcare employees’ primary job activities, and as such, they should have been compensated for the time spent performing this travel which constitutes work.
This lawsuit provides an example of how an employer can underpay its employees in violation of the FLSA by not fully paying them all overtime wages earned for all overtime work that they perform. This unpaid time often results in unpaid overtime which adds up over the course of an employee’s employment. The FLSA sets forth the minimum compensation employees must be paid, and non-exempt hourly employees are entitled to receive full and proper compensation under the FLSA, including overtime.
The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Eastern Division (Columbus) and is titled Farmer v. LHC Group, Inc., Case No. 2:20-cv-3838.
If you have questions about your right to overtime compensation, right to pay for time spent traveling, or your rights in general, please contact our office to speak with an experienced overtime lawyer.