S.C. Dealer Violates Child Labor Laws

By Staff Writer October 11, 2021

A recent federal investigation found Liberty Autoworld Inc. – operating as AutoWorld of Conway, S.C. – violated federal child labor standards. The division found that the employer violated the Fair Labor Standards Act by allowing a 14-year-old child to operate power-driven machinery while assisting with auto repairs. Liberty Autoworld also allowed the minor to work while school was in session.

By law, employers may only allow 14- and 15-year-old workers to be employed as follows:

  • Outside of school hours.
  • No more than 3 hours on a school day, including Fridays.
  • No more than 8 hours on a non-school day.
  • No more than 18 hours during a week when school is in session.
  • No more than 40 hours during a week when school is not in session.
  • Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.; except between June 1 and Labor Day.

The division assessed a $3,426 civil penalty for violating child labor requirements.

In addition, Liberty Autoworld violated Fair Labor Standards Act’s overtime requirements by failing to pay employees the required time-and-one-half rate when they exceeded 40 hours in a workweek. As a result, the division recovered $16,459 in back wages for 15 workers.

Liberty Autoworld Inc. is a used car dealership and automobile repair shop servicing the Conway area.

Ron Geris, owner Autoworld of Conway, responded to the charges. "We were disappointed at the penalty we received for helping two parents, both of which were Autoworld employees that gave full consent for their child to work along side them at our dealership while they were unable to attend in-school classes during Covid-19 restriction. Our world is constantly changing and our employees are always held in the highest regard. We are always willing to help families in need, and were not aware that anything was done outside of (the) law regarding this situation and we have paid all penalties (in) full," he said via Facebook message. 

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Last modified on Saturday, 16 October 2021 18:02