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Lyons staff get $424,000 in back pay

Patrick Lyons and his group of 15 restaurants, including Sonsie, Towne Stove & Spirits, and Kings Boston, have agreed to pay $424,000 in back wages and damages to 409 workers, according to the Department of Labor.

Lyons and co-owner ­Edward Sparks failed to provide overtime compensation to kitchen employees who worked more than 40 hours a week, as required by law. Most of those who did not receive proper wages were paid by Superbrite Professional Cleaning, a separate company later known as Excel Management.

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“Utilizing contract labor providers does not absolve employers from their responsibility of complying with the [law] and paying workers the wages they are legally due,” George Rioux, district director for the department’s wage and hour division in Boston, said in a statement.

“The use of contract labor providers in the restaurant industry has increased over the past several years, along with violations.”

As part of settlement agreements reached with the government, Lyons Group will audit each restaurant’s current compliance with the rules and take other steps to prevent violations, such as implementing a software program designed to detect employees who work in two or more of the restaurants during the same week.

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