PHILADELPHIA — A therapist is collectively suing Creative Health Services Inc. for allegations of unpaid wages and employment misclassification on behalf of herself and other employees of the company.
Audrey Leffler, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated, filed a lawsuit on March 30 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against Creative Health Services Inc., Andrew Trentacoste, Kathy Kumitis, Tim Aleva, and Karen Becker, citing violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act, the Pennsylvania Wage Payment and Collection Act, and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.
According to her complaint, Leffler worked for the defendant’s at their location in Pottstown, PA, from 1990 until 2007 as a fee-for-service therapist. In 2007, the plaintiff was made an employee under the title of “Special Projects Coordinator.” She claims that in 2014, the outpatient director began to pressure her to complete additional work without pay, causing her to return to her position as and independent contract therapist.
In such a position, Leffler and others were reportedly paid hourly only for each hour-long patient treatment encounter, not including subsequent required paperwork. The plaintiff claims that in October 2014, she was instructed to complete a new auditing tool which took up several hours of unpaid time in additional to other “off-the-book” office duties.
In May 2015, in response to employee complaints, the CEO allegedly held a meeting to inform them that they would be required to establish new contracts and that jobs would be threatened in the process. The plaintiff avers that the defendant’s actions violated their rights as employees and that the actions were willful and intentional.
Leffler seeks class action status for the suit, disgorgement of all profits and benefits obtained by the defendant equal to the amount earned by the alleged FLSA misclassification, any unjust enrichment, attorneys’ fees, costs, prejudgment interest, and a trial by jury. She is represented by Robert C. Drake and Bebe H. Kivitz of Jacobs Kivitz & Drake LLC.
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania Case number 5:16-cv-01443-JFL