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Feds take home-care company to court over unpaid employee wages

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Feds take home-care company to court over unpaid employee wages

Sep 17, 2022 | 9:00 am ET
By Clark Kauffman
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Feds take home-care company to court over unpaid employee wages
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An Iowa home health care provider, accused of failing to pay overtime wages, has agreed to a settlement with federal labor officials. (Photo by Jetta Productions Inc./Getty Images)

One of western Iowa’s in-home health care providers, accused of failing to pay its workers overtime wages, has agreed to a settlement with federal labor officials.

The U.S. Department of Labor has taken Embrace Iowa to court so that the settlement has the effect of an enforceable court order. The deal calls for the company to pay a total of $3,888 to four employees.

Embrace Iowa provides elderly and disabled clients with respite care, personal care services and other forms of health care and nonmedical home assistance. The company is based in Glenwood and is run by Julie Kalambokidis.

According to the DOL, Kalambokidis sets policies for the company, hires and fires employees, and is in charge of “all significant financial decisions and is involved in day-to-day activities” at Embrace Iowa.

The DOL claims Kalambokidis and the company violated the federal Fair Labor Standards Act when they failed to pay their employees one-and-one-half times their regular rate of pay for time worked in excess of 40 hours per week.

The DOL also alleges that Embrace Iowa has failed to keep complete and accurate records related to its payroll – and specifically that it does not have accurate records showing the hours worked each day by employees.

Court records indicate Embrace Iowa has agreed to pay the $3,888 to four employees and to refrain from taking any retaliatory action against employees over complaints related to alleged wage-and-hour violations.

The settlement agreement has yet to be approved by the court as a consent order and judgment.