Zeigler Auto Group’s sales may place it among the leading auto dealerships nationwide, but a recent federal investigation found sales consultants’ commissions often failed to meet minimum wage requirements at 13 Michigan, Indiana and Illinois locations.
The investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division recovered a total of $85,111 in minimum wages and overtime back wages for 214 employees of Harold Zeigler Auto Group Inc.
“Employees paid on commission basis must earn at least the federal minimum wage per hour of work completed. If they do not, employers must make up the difference,” explained Wage and Hour Division District Director Mary O’Rourke in Grand Rapids, MI. “Our investigation put money into the pockets of workers who were underpaid, and levels the playing field for employers who play by the rules. Other employers in this industry should use this investigation as an opportunity to review their own pay practices and avoid similar violations.”
The division found the employer violated the Fair Labor Standards Act when they:
- Failed to assure that sales consultants’ commissions covered at least the federal minimum wage for all the hours that they worked during each monthly settlement period
- Wrongly classified some salaried employees in their business development centers as exempt from overtime requirements, and then failed to pay them overtime despite their duties not qualifying for exemption
- Failed to maintain accurate payroll records
Investigators determined the employer had underpaid 80 sales consultants employed at 10 locations including...