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Shop Owner Who Paid Worker in Oily Pennies Gets Reprimanded

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Jan. 7, 2022—Consequences have come for a Georgia shop owner following a March 2021 incident in which the shop owner paid $915 in back wages to an employee entirely in oily pennies. 

Andreas Flaten, a former manager at A OK Walker Luxury Autoworks, told the publication he quit in November 2020 and, after persistently demanding his final paycheck, discovered a pile of pennies at the end of his driveway along with an envelope containing a pay stub on March 12.

Now, according to a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, the Labor Department is seeking $36,971 in back wages and liquidated damages, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. Investigators found the shop owner, Miles Walker, violated the retaliation, overtime and recordkeeping prohibitions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Since the original incident, the shop has been selling “a Penny for Your Thoughts” T-shirts and published defamatory statements about the former employee on its website, the report said.

The investigation also found, outside of the incident with Flaten, that the shop had not been paying an overtime rate to employees. 

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