Department of Labor Levies $161K Civil Penalty to Operators of Seven Middle Tennessee Little Caesar’ Franchises


Investigation findings: U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found the employers failed to account for all hours worked and, as a result, did not pay workers at least minimum wage and overtime, in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Investigators also found the employers allowed 15-year-old workers to engage in prohibited and hazardous activities such as preparing food for baking, removing food from ovens and operating a vertical stand-up mixing machine. In addition, the employers scheduled 15-year-old employees to work after 7 p.m. and more than 18 hours in a school week, as well as past 9 p.m. and more than 40 hours in a week when school was not in session – all violations of the federal child labor standards.

Employers: JJ Pizza Service LLC and S&S Pizza LLC – both operating as Little Caesars

Investigation sites:    

  • 5305 Mt. View Road, Antioch 37013
  • 1202 S. James Campbell Blvd., Columbia 38401
  • 4091 Mallory Lane, Franklin 37067
  • 3304 Gallatin Pike, Nashville 37216
  • 7090 Charlotte Pike, Nashville 37209
  • 2319 Franklin Pike, Nashville 37204
  • 2268 Murfreesboro Road, Nashville 37217

Back Wages Recovered: $1,625 in back wages for 21 workers

Civil Money Penalties Assessed: The agency assessed a $161,050 civil penalty to address the child labor violations.

Quote: “Child labor laws are intended to ensure young workers obtain valuable work experience safely without interfering with their safety and education,” said Wage and Hour Division Regional Administrator Juan Coria, in Atlanta. “As the end of the school year fast approaches, restaurant employers should review child labor laws and contact the Wage and Hour Division if they have questions. Employers who fail to place the safety and welfare of their employees first can find themselves struggling to find workers.”

Background: In fiscal years 2020 and 2021 investigators in the Southeast found child labor violations in more than 190 food service industry employers investigated, resulting in more than $1 million in penalties assessed to employers. In addition, investigations recovered more than $1.5 million in back wages and liquidated damages for more than 2,000 workers. The division offers a fact sheet on Fair Labor Standards Act wage laws and the restaurant industry. Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division’s YouthRules! information, which promotes positive and safe work experiences for teens and provides guidelines about protections for young workers to youth, parents, employers and educators.

Learn more about Wage and Hour Division.

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