Wells Fargo & Company ("Wells Fargo" or the "Bank") has come under federal investigation for violating the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA") by failing to pay overtime. Wells Fargo's former employees have spoken out about being forced to create fake bank accounts in order to meet impossible sales goals, and have claimed they were forced to work unpaid overtime to meet those goals. These employees claim they would stay extra hours at the office; if these hours were recorded, managers would go into the Bank's time tracking software and reduce them. If employees tried to push back against these practices, they were threatened with termination, and, in several instances, employees who pushed back were fired.
The FLSA requires that non-exempt employees receive time-and-a-half rates of pay for every hour worked in excess of 40 hours per week. According to former employees, they weren't paid at all for overtime hours that they worked. In response to these claims, the Department of Labor ("DOL") is conducting an in depth investigation of the Bank's employment practices for the past several years. The Wage and Hour Division of the DOL will review all complaints and alleged violations.
If the DOL finds that Wells Fargo was underpaying its hourly employees, they will be entitled to back pay, which will cover the difference between the amount employees should have received and what they were actually paid.
The FLSA also prohibits retaliation against employees who have filed any complaint or participated in investigations or lawsuits against their employer for employment law violations. Employees who were fired for pushing back against Wells Fargo's overtime policies would therefore be in a position to sue the Bank for lost wages and other expenses resulting from their unemployment.
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Kang, Y. Peter. "DOL Launches Wells Fargo Employment Probe Amid Scandal." Law360. Portfolio Media, Inc. 26 Sept. 2016. Web.
Egan, Matt. "Wells Fargo's Wage Theft Problem." CNNMoney. Cable News Network, 30 Sept. 2016. Web.