A proposed collective action alleges that Centene has failed to pay its care coordinators overtime wages in accordance with federal law.
Two former employees claim in the 12-page suit that defendants Centene Management Company, LLC and Centene Corporation had a common policy of paying care coordinators only for the hours between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. that they were scheduled to work. The suit alleges, however, that workers “consistently” put in more than 40 hours per week and were not paid at their time-and-a-half overtime rate for the hours they worked in excess of 40.
According to the case, Centene has run afoul of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by failing to properly pay employees for their overtime hours.
The two plaintiffs claim to have worked at the healthcare provider’s Little Rock, Arkansas facility until August 2021 and November 2020, respectively. As care coordinators, the plaintiffs were responsible for coordinating the services provided to Centene’s clients, including scheduling appointments, meeting with clients, taking them to appointments and assisting them with day-to-day activities, the suit says.
Per the case, the plaintiffs and other care coordinators frequently worked more than 40 hours per week because of the volume of work required to perform their duties. Although they were only paid for scheduled hours between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., care coordinators often worked outside that timeframe on tasks such as traveling to client locations and inputting client information and care plans into Centene’s system, the lawsuit alleges. As a result, the employees frequently worked hours for which they received no compensation, according to the suit.
The case claims Centene “knew, or showed reckless disregard” for whether its pay practices violated the FLSA.
The plaintiffs seek to represent all Centene care coordinators who worked more than 40 hours in any week within the past three years.
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