MGM Springfield to Pay $6.8m Settlement for Wage Theft

  • MGM underpaid 2,036 employees, who will receive a share of $461,587
  • The casino said that it has worked to resolve the issues since 2019
  • Managers were illegally taking tips and some workers weren’t paid for OT
Empty wallet
MGM Springfield has been found to have violated numerous Massachusetts labor laws and has to pay a $6.8m settlement over the failings. [Image:]

Held to account

MGM Springfield has to pay a $6.8m settlement for wage theft after it underpaid 2,036 employees. The labor law violations at the MGM Resorts International-owned property were uncovered following a Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office multi-year investigation.

The authorities discovered that the casino resort’s management team often did not pay staff on time, failed to pay them their proper overtime wages, did not pay tipped employees their minimum wage entitlement, and unlawfully retaining tips.

remaining $6.4m will serve as a penalty payment to the state

Workers will receive their share of the full restitution of $461,587 within 30 days as part of the settlement. The remaining $6.4m will serve as a penalty payment to the state.

The casino must also put implement a new two-year compliance program to ensure that there aren’t any future issues. The Attorney General’s Office will approve an independent compliance reviewer, while a third party will need to carry out two wage and hour audits each year and submit the findings to the authorities.

Resolving the issues

Talking about the failings, Massachusetts Attorney General Andrea Campbell said on Wednesday that MGM’s actions “made it more difficult for these employees to take care of themselves and their families.”

The majority of these workers were service staff who were on an hourly rate, such as bartenders, cleaners, table game dealers, and ushers.

MGM Resorts International Communications Director Dara Cohen underlined in a statement that the company has been working to resolve any such issues since 2019 and it plans to invest in regularly reviewing procedures to make sure that everything is fully up to scratch.  

Some of the offenses

MGM Springfield opened its doors for the first time in August 2018 and it was just a couple of months later that the Attorney General’s Office Fair Labor Division started getting numerous complaints. Included among the complaints was that certain managers were illegally taking a cut of tips, which is not permitted.

Tip pooling is common in casinos among service staff, with everyone putting the money into the pot to allow for a more even distribution amongst the employees. Massachusetts has a law, though, that prevents any supervisors, managers, or owners from taking part in such a pool.

made its security guards work while on their meal breaks without compensating them

MGM Springfield was also not complying with the state law that dictates that overtime workers must receive one and a half times their hourly rate for any time over a 40-hour work week. Management also made security guards work while on their meal breaks without compensating them for doing so.

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