Investigation recovers $44K for employees of electrical contractor that misclassified workers
May 13, 2022
A Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) investigation found an electrical contractor misclassified workers and paid them less than the state's prevailing-wage rate for work they performed on a state-funded project.
DLI's prevailing-wage section found Minnesota Controls Solutions, L.L.C., of Champlin, Minnesota, misclassified workers as apprentices that were involved in a renovation project at Camp Ripley in 2019 and 2020, resulting in the workers being paid less than the prevailing-wage rate for the work they performed.
These workers did not meet the definition of an "apprentice" under Minnesota Rules 5200.1070 and should have been paid the prevailing-wage rate.
Workers were also not paid overtime as required under the prevailing-wage law. Under the prevailing-wage law, workers must be provided overtime compensation when working more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week.
In this investigation, DLI's prevailing-wage section recovered $44,873.15 in back wages owed to five construction workers, with back-wage amounts ranging from $287 to $21,925.16.
Prevailing wage is the minimum hourly wage employers must pay their employees performing construction work on projects funded in whole or in part with state dollars. DLI sets the prevailing-wage rates to be comparable to wages paid for similar work in the county where the construction project is located.
DLI is available for consultations to inform project participants, including contractors and subcontractors, about prevailing-wage compliance and best practices. Contractors that perform work on state-financed construction projects can sign up for prevailing-wage notifications.
Contractors planning to bid on projects subject to Minnesota's prevailing-wage law should contact DLI with questions before bidding or entering into construction contracts.