Massachusetts Attorney General's Office

Mass. AG Slaps Cleaning Company With Over $65K in Labor Violations Citations

MP Star Professionals, which operates as Cleaning Pros, and its owner Christian Perez, were issued the citations for a number of alleged violations, according to the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office

In this Monday, May 2, 2016, file photo, the Massachusetts state flag flies in front of Boston City Hall
AP Photo/Steven Senne, File

A cleaning company is facing over $65,000 in citations for allegedly violating state labor laws, the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office announced in a news release Monday.

MP Star Professionals, which operates as Cleaning Pros, and its owner Christian Perez, were issued the citations for several alleged violations, including failure to pay wages, failure to furnish payroll records, failure to permit employees to earn and use sick time, failure to pay overtime, forcing workers to pay for their own supplies and for wrongly classifying employees as independent contractors, according to the release from AG Maura Healey's office.

The AG's Fair Labor Division began its investigation into the company after getting complaints from workers, the agency said. The company is based in New York, but is frequently contracted to clean Boston area properties.

The company allegedly failed to produce records in response to multiple payroll demands from the Fair Labor Division, according to the news release. The AG's office had to instead resort to using self-reported records from workers during an "extensive audit", which determined the company "failed to pay wages to employees, failed to reimburse workers for the cost of cleaning supplies, failed to pay overtime for all hours worked beyond 40 in a week, prevented workers from accessing earned sick time and in some instances, retaliated against workers for calling in sick by not assigning them work", according to the news release.

Prosecutors also allege that MP Star misclassified workers as independent contractors.

In a related case, Florida-based company CorpHousing Group has been cited $15,000 for allegedly failing to provide records to the AG's office. CorpHousing frequently contracted with MP Star to have properties it manages in the Boston area cleaned.

The AG's office claims that MP Star targeted Spanish-speaking women "due to language and cultural barriers that can make it more difficult for these employees to assert their rights".

The AG's office says wage violations come up frequently in the cleaning industry.

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