Centene Employees Sue, Alleging FLSA Violations

Two employees of Centene Management Company (CMC) are suing the company over allegations that they knowingly failed to pay them the correct overtime wage over a period of 3 years. The plaintiffs, Laeartha Banks and Aria Lambert, claim that these actions by their employers violated explicit overtime provisions detailed in both the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Arkansas Minimum Wage Act (AMWA).

Both of the plaintiffs work full-time for the multi-national healthcare company from their office in Little Rock, Arkansas. Often, Banks and Lambert would work overtime (over 40 hours a week). The company had classified both Banks and Lambert as employees who were “non-exempt from the overtime requirement of the FLSA,” meaning they were required to pay them the correct overtime rate for their additional hours. The Code of Federal Regulations states that all forms of regular compensation must be taken into account when totaling “the regular rate on which overtime pay must be based.”

The standard overtime rate is 1.5 times the hourly rate of an employee, in addition to any other forms of compensation they receive in the pay period. The plaintiffs argue that CMC did not consider the bonuses they give their employees when calculating their overtime rate, despite them having received the bonuses “in pay periods in which they [the employees] also worked in excess of forty hours per week.” This is in direct violation of the FLSA and the AMWA, the plaintiffs asserted, a fact that they say CMC was aware of and even showed “reckless disregard” for.

Banks and Lambert are seeking a “declaratory judgement, monetary damages, liquidated damages, prejudgement interest, and a reasonable attorney’s fee and costs,” due to the perceived violations of failing to pay the proper overtime rate. The damages they are seeking go back to 2017.The plaintiffs are represented by Sanford Law Firm.