5 Conn. Firms Cited for Paying Workers Off the Books, Evading WC Laws

August 22, 2012

Connecticut authorities said this week that five subcontracting firms at a large Stamford construction site have been cited for alleged wage violations.

The construction site at Stamford’s Harbor Point area is the largest development in the state. It has attracted a number of labor investigations in recent months that led to allegations of labor-law violations — including paying workers off the books, failing to pay overtime and taxes, and skirting workers’ compensation laws.

The latest citations involved subcontracting firms paying their workers in cash and keeping them off the books, a practice that allows companies to avoid paying appropriate wages and complying with workers’ comp obligations. So far this year, more than a dozen construction and subcontracting firms working at Harbor Point have been charged or cited by state authorities.

According to a report from The Stamford Advocate, many firms that are cited simply disappear from the construction site.

Getting cooperation from workers employed at such firms is also difficult, according to the report, because some are undocumented immigrants and they often mistake labor department inspectors as immigration officials.

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