Monthly Archives: June 2017

Recent Massachusetts Wage Act Decision

Wage Act Violations: Even More Expensive After Supreme Judicial Court Rules That Prejudgment Interest Can be Awarded in Addition to Triple Damages and Attorneys Fees

Although many Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) Policies do not cover wage claims, the number of wage claims under state and federal wage-hour laws, including class actions, have rapidly risen over the past several years.   Recently, on a question referred from the federal court to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC), the SJC made state wage act violations even more expensive for employers.  On June 26, 2017, the SJC held that, in addition to mandatory triple damages, prejudgment interest must be added to the amount of lost wages and other benefits awarded under the Massachusetts Wage Act.  (George v. National Water Main Cleaning Co., No. SJC-12191 (MA, June 26, 2017)).  The Court clarified, however, that such prejudgment interest shall not be added to the treble damages part of the award.