Construction workers sue house moving company for unpaid wages

Michelle Keahey Nov. 20, 2012, 11:47am

NEW ORLEANS - Several construction workers have filed a lawsuit against an East Texas house moving company claiming that they were not paid for all hours worked and were not always paid the federally-mandated minimum wage.

Jose Santillo Avilez Soriano, Elvin Ordonez, Odin Mazariegos, and Rolando Enrique Ortega Barchona filed suit against Gulf Coast Lift and Ducky Johnson House Movers Inc. on Nov. 13 in federal court in New Orleans.

The plaintiffs were hired by the defendants to perform construction services and were classified as “employees.” During the time of their employment, the workers were paid at a rate of $100 to $110 per day, regardless of the number of hours each Plaintiff worked in one day.

According to the lawsuit, the defendants sporadically promised to pay the plaintiffs an additional $50 per day on days when they worked longer than usual, but these wages were never paid.

“Plaintiffs regularly worked between 60 to 84 hours per week for Defendants, but were not paid time and one-half for any hours worked in excess of 40 per week, in direct violation of the FLSA,” the lawsuit states.

In addition, the plaintiffs argue that during the weeks that they worked more than 83 hours over the course of 6 days and received only $600 in wages for their work, they were not paid the federally-mandated minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.

The defendants are accused of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Louisiana Final Wage Payment Act.

Soriano, Ordonez, Mazariegos, and Barchona are seeking damages for unpaid back wages, penalty wages, attorney’s fees, interest, and liquidated damages.

The plaintiffs are represented by Jody Forester Jackson and Mary Bubbett Jackson of Jackson + Jackson in New Orleans. A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Sarah S. Vance is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:12-cv-02744

More News