BOSTON – An Ohio-based painting company has been sued for failing to pay more than $2 million in wages to its employees in violation of the Massachusetts prevailing wage and overtime laws, Attorney General Martha Coakley announced last week.
The lawsuit filed in Suffolk Superior Court alleges that M&J Painting Inc. and its owner, Michael Kerpelis, intentionally failed to pay all wages due to employees and “knowingly submitted false payroll” records in support of its claims for payment on a public construction contract.
In November of 2008, M&J was selected from among six bidders to work on the Braga Bridge painting project, a $13 million project in Fall River and Somerset. In May 2011, Coakley’s office received complaints alleging that M&J was not paying some of its employees for all of their hours on the project.
Through its investigation, Coakley’s office determined that from March 2010 through November 2011, M&J knew how many hours its employees were working, but failed to pay dozens of its workers for all hours worked. As a result, the lawsuit alleges that M&J failed to pay employees more than $2 million in prevailing wages. •