PHILADELPHIA – An attorney for a former maintenance worker
who filed a lawsuit
raising allegations of wage law violations against Eastern University, a private Christian school in St. Davids, said the university had been
notified that it was not complying with overtime laws.
Former maintenance worker Carmen Anuzzi filed his lawsuit against Eastern University on
Aug. 30 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
“Mr. Anuzzi’s situation appears to be a clear example of an
employer knowingly manipulating the reality of a job description in an effort
to avoid overtime pay, in violation of state and federal law,” Anuzzi’s
attorney, Darin T. Orsini, told the Pennsylvania Record.
Specifically, Anuzzi’s complaint makes claims under the
federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), as well as the Pennsylvania Minimum
In his lawsuit, Anuzzi alleged that Eastern University did
not properly pay him for overtime when he worked in excess of 40 hours per
week. He said the university was responsible for paying an overtime premium.
“His case is especially troublesome because the defendant
was apparently made aware of the overtime obligations on multiple occasions,
yet continued to commit conscious and deliberate violations,” Orsini said.
Through the lawsuit, Anuzzi is seeking a trial by jury, unpaid
wages, overtime pay, interest, liquidated damages and court costs.
“Mr. Anuzzi is no longer employed at Eastern,” Orsini said.
According to the complaint, the plaintiff worked for the
maintenance department at Eastern University for part of a three-year period “until
his separation on approximately Nov. 15, 2015.”
During that time, Anuzzi said he was paid on a weekly basis
and “regularly worked over 40 hours per week.”
The plaintiff alleges that he was not compensated for his
overtime work, even though he was allegedly entitled to compensation for hours
worked in excess of 40 per week at a rate equal to 150 percent of his normal hourly
The complaint said the FLSA and the Pennsylvania Minimum
Wage Act require employers to pay at least one and one-half times the employee’s
regular pay rate for any hours worked in excess of 40 per week, and that an “employer
cannot avoid this obligation by paying on a salary basis.”
According to information obtained from the Department of Labor,
the FLSA provides an exemption from both minimum wage and overtime pay for
employees who are employed as bona fide executive, administrative, professional
and outside sales employees, as well as some employees who work in computer-related
To qualify for an exemption, the FLSA specifies that employees
generally must meet certain tests regarding their job duties and be paid on a
salary basis at not less than $455 per week. Job titles do not determine exempt
In order for an exemption to apply, an employee’s specific
job duties and salary must meet all the requirements of the department’s
Eastern University declined to comment on the litigation.