Celine Dion Is Being Sued By A Former Employee For Unpaid Overtime Wages

Another Day, Another Celeb Suit!

Celine Dion‘s ex-handyman is suing the superstar, accusing her of illegally denying him overtime pay on numerous occasions. The former employee, Keith Sturtevant, has filed a complaint in Florida stating that  he ”routinely worked in excess of 40 hours per work week for Defendant’s benefit,” and never received a penny in overtime wages. Why do I feel like we’ve heard this story before? Read more deets from the lawsuit inside.

According to the suit, Celine Dion and her husband Rene Angelil specifically designated their handyman as a private contractor so that they could avoid paying him overtime. And  Sturtevant says he was one of many employees stiffed out of their wages:

Keith Sturtevant said he was asked to work 48 to 60 hours a week by Dion and her husband Rene Angelil but offered no extra money beyond his $63,000 per year salary because he was a designated as a private contractor.

“There is no question he worked just tons and tons of overtime hours, and when it came to a head, that is when he left,” Sturtevant’s lawyer Dennis Card told the Daily News.

“My client is not exempt from the Fair Labor Act, and they know it damn well,” Card, who filed the claim in federal court, said.

Sturtevant claims he was the sole employee in charge of a warehouse controlled by Dion, 44, and also worked at her compound in Hobe Sound, Fla., performing “extensive” tasks such as cleaning house shutters, building book shelves, repairing kitchen items, setting up and tearing down event equipment and running errands.

Dion’s rep was not immediately available for comment.

According to the complaint, Dion employed at least three other full-time maintenance workers as independent contractors “in an attempt to avoid paying workers compensation and appropriate federal withholding taxes.”

Sturtevant was hired in March 2009 and worked for Dion until June, the lawsuit stated.

Card declined to discuss the exit.

“His departure may be the subject of another lawsuit,” Card told The News.

The NY Daily News

 

Since the NY Daily News report, representatives for Celine Dion have spoken out. They told TMZ that Dion‘s former employee turned down a $10,000 severance package (which also included vacation time), after he was fired last month due to “poor performance.” According to their statement, Sturtevant was treated with complete respect, and was well-paid for his work.

Hmmm… I need you guys to weigh in on this one. Which is more likely: that Dion is a shady boss or that someone is trying to get over?

 

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  1. Zach Rickel

    Honestly it’s probably a bit of both! Celine and her husband don’t want to pay the guy anymore than they originally agreed to which is legit. I guess it kinda comes down to the original agreement. Did they tell him he’d be working over 40 hours a week? Did he say he was okay with that? Did they have conversations later about a pay increase? Who knows?

  2. nonono

    From the article (not saying it’s true or not) it sounds like Dion and husband pulled the same move Microsoft used to do w/their “temp” and contract employees to avoid paying overtime and benefits (mainly benefits).

    MS was sued as well and they lost, sort of.

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