Teleperformance USA, a Salt Lake City-based call center company, has agreed to pay almost $2 million in back overtime wages to employees in Utah and nine other states.
The U.S. Department of Labor announced the settlement Wednesday following an investigation conducted by its wage and hour division in Salt Lake City.
According to settlement provisions, back wages totaling $1,978,147 will be paid to 15,862 workers in the 10 states where Teleperformance agents provided over-the-telephone customer service for clients that include Sprint Communications, Verizon Wireless and Dell Computers.
In Utah, Teleperformance has a call center in Lindon and had one in Clearfield.
Labor Department spokesman Rich Kulchewski said the overtime violations stemmed from employees not being compensated for breaks that were less than 30 minutes and for time spent waiting for work areas to become available, even through their shifts already had started.
A few cases, he added, involved workers improperly classified as salaried employees exempt from overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The act requires employers to pay time-and-a-half to workers who exceed 40 hours in a single week. It also sets the federal minimum wage at $7.25 an hour.
Kulchewski said Teleperformance USA “cooperated fully and worked quickly and effectively to resolve all issues identified.”
A Teleperformance USA spokesman did not return requests for comment.