Four thousand air traffic controllers were paid $14,128,000 in back-pay and liquidated damages on April 15, 2019, after judgment was entered against the federal government by the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The appellate court affirmed the judgment of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims finding that the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) pay system in which controllers were paid for hundreds of hours of overtime work in the form of “credit hours,” which functioned as compensatory time but had no monetary value, violated the Fair Labor Standards Act. In addition to back-pay, the Court found the Government failed to meet its burden of proving it acted in good faith, and awarded liquidated damages. The Court also awarded the controllers their attorneys’ fees and costs of the litigation.
Gregory McGillivary was lead counsel for the air traffic controllers and is a partner at McGillivary Steele Elkin.