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Judge Grants Preliminary Approval to Settlement in HVAC Technicians' Wage Litigation

In July, a federal judge in Maryland granted preliminary approval to a settlement in an action against American Residential Services. The class action complaint was brought by an employee on behalf of himself and others and alleged that American Residential Services LLC and American Residential Services Management Corp. had failed to pay their employees overtime wages. The preliminarily approved settlement is for $68,055.75.

The complaint in the case was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland and consists of a collective action for Fair Labor Standards Act violations and a class action under the Maryland Wage and Hour Law. The settlement class is made up of 59 people who worked as HVAC technicians between 2008 and 2011. They alleged, through named plaintiff Christopher Edelen, that the company had violated the law by using only fixed hourly wage and not commissions and bonuses to calculate overtime pay. Additionally, the complaint alleged that the company did not properly compensate for work in regards to a referral program for which it was supposed to pay on an hourly basis.

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