Several healthcare companies and staffing agencies – including Kaiser Permanente and AMN Healthcare – were sued for a number of wage violations, including failing to pay overtime and requiring nurses to skip their state-mandated meal and rest breaks. Now, attorneys working with ClassAction.org are investigating whether other healthcare facilities are improperly paying their travel nurses.
What You Can Do:
If you think your rights are being violated, fill out the form on this page and tell us about it. Your inquiry will then be forwarded to one of the attorneys handling this investigation. Someone at the firm may then reach out to you directly to discuss your rights and why you may be owed money from your employer.
Can I Lose My Job for Complaining?
Federal law strictly prohibits employers from firing, demoting or otherwise retaliating against workers who assert their rights.
If you’re a travel nurse and feel your rights are being violated at work, attorneys working with ClassAction.org may be able to help.
They have launched an investigation into several hospitals and staffing agencies and found that a number of travel nursesare being subjected to unfair and illegal wage practices. Unfortunately, they believe these practices are not limited to a single hospital, facility or staffing company.
What Types of Violations Are Being Reported?
After speaking with dozens of travel nurses, the attorneys found that some:
Weren’t paid overtime when working more than 40 hours per week
Weren’t given uninterrupted meal and rest breaks as required by state laws
Weren’t paid for work done “off the clock”
Weren’t paid for traveling to training courses
Had their requests for overtime approval turned down even though they already worked the extra hours
Weren’t paid for time spent taking training courses (some of which may have been done online)
Didn’t receive their wages after getting fired or resigning from their positions
One of the biggest problems cited by these nurses was that they were given too much work for one person to handle. It is believed that some hospitals and staffing agencies may be putting unreasonable expectations on their nurses (assigning them too many patients, for instance) to the point where they would never be able to finish their work within their allotted shifts – and, therefore, forcing them to work extra hours.
Shift Hand-Offs: Why Some Nurses May Not Be Getting Paid Properly
It is believed that, in particular, lengthy handoffs are the reason many of these nurses aren’t being paid properly.
In most instances, travel nurses are assigned shifts for a certain block of time, such as 12 hours. At the end of a shift, there is typically an overlap of 30 minutes with the nurse who will be taking over.
Unfortunately, it is believed that a great deal of this 30 minutes is spent by the relieving nurse in “huddles” and other start-of-shift meetings. Therefore, the nurse on the earlier shift is left waiting around, sometimes beyond the end of his or her shift, before he or she can even begin the “hand-off.”
Additionally, it is believed that these handoffs can last up to two hours and, sometimes, well beyond the nurses’ regularly scheduled shifts. This can leave the nurses with hours of unpaid time. Allegations have also surfaced that some hospital supervisors may be refusing to sign nurses’ timecards when extra hours are worked.
Don’t I Have to Be Approved to Work Overtime?
A company can’t create a workplace policy that supersedes federal law. If your employer knows or has reason to know you’re working, you must be paid for the time. Furthermore, if your hours extend beyond 40 per week, you are generally entitled to overtime, approved or not.
How Can a Lawsuit Help Me?
Travel nurses who weren’t paid properly may be able to collect any unpaid wages they missed out on over the last two to three years.
This many include:
Wages for meal breaks that they worked through
Pay for training that they attended
Furthermore, a lawsuit can also help ensure your employer follows a pay policy that complies with both federal and state labor laws.
What You Can Do
If you’re working or have worked as a travel nurse and would like to learn more about this investigation, contact us by filling out the form on this page. After you get in touch with us, one of the attorneys may reach out to you directly to ask you a few questions. They’ve already filed one lawsuit and, if they can speak to enough travel nurses, they may be able to sue other companies and agencies believed to be breaking the law.
Remember, it doesn’t cost anything to contact us or to speak to the lawyers we work with. Furthermore, federal law prohibits employers from firing or otherwise retaliating against workers who come forward to assert their rights.