The following is a press release from the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office.
BOSTON – A Worcester home healthcare company and its owner have agreed to pay $162,000 in restitution and penalties, including back wages to 233 employees, to settle allegations that it violated state and hour laws, Attorney General Maura Healey announced this week.
Pinnacle Home Healthcare Services Inc. and its owner Pauline Mwangi have been cited for failing to make timely payment of wages to home health care aides who provide assistance with daily living activities such as bathing, dressing, and housekeeping to elderly, ill, and disabled clients throughout central and western Massachusetts.
“Home health aides provide thousands of elderly and disabled residents in Massachusetts with the care they need for daily living,” said AG Healey. “We’re pleased that we were able to help Pinnacle employees get back the wages they earned.”
The AG’s Office began its investigation after receiving a complaint from a Pinnacle employee alleging the company was issuing her checks that were missing pay for specific hours worked. The investigation revealed many discrepancies between actual hours employees worked and the hours reported on their timesheets. An audit of Pinnacle’s payroll records covering September 2016 through November 2017 revealed a pattern of late and underpaid wages. As a result of the AG’s investigation, Pinnacle has improved its timekeeping and payroll services to ensure that workers are paid in full and on time.
Under Massachusetts law, employers must pay employees all wages earned within six days of the end of a pay period.
This matter was handled by Assistant Attorney General Brian O’Donnell and Investigator Leah Lucier, both of the AG’s Fair Labor Division.
Workers who believe their rights have been violated in their workplace are encouraged to file a complaint at www.mass.gov/ago/wagetheft.
For information about the state’s wage and hour laws, workers may call the Office’s Fair Labor Hotline at (617) 727-3465 or go to the Attorney General’s Workplace Rights website www.mass.gov/fairlabor for materials in multiple languages.