I worked as a private investigator for ICS Merrill EMSI investigative services from 2008 to 2009 investigating insurance claims for some of the most recognizable names in the insurance industry. I was consistently paid less than minimum wage and, of course, much below my contracted rate. I brought this to the attention of management immediately and they strung me along with emails stating they would look into it. After being named the number one investigator in the region I was contacted by the regional field manager in May of 2009 while working in Wisconsin (a state with one-party consent to telephone recording). The regional field manager threatened me when I asked for my back pay.
She stated I shouldnt expect to be paid every last nickel and dime that I earned and I shouldnt put all the time I was asked to work on my time sheet. She then stated I would be hurt if I did. She also explained the more successful an investigator is when obtaining video the longer it would take to write the report; she called this non-billable time since they charged a flat-rate to their clients. She further explained the more non-billable time an investigator has the less they will be paid per hour. My boss repeated that I would be hurt and repeated over and over that I should quit in a taunting manner. Fourteen days after that conversation all work was removed from my schedule and during a conference call on that same day the same regional field manager said they were hiring investigators in the area of Chicago, Illinois; that was my neighborhood. None of the back pay was put on my paycheck and I was closed out of the email system and my phone was shut off.
I filed for unemployment, which was denied because ICS Merrill said I was refusing to work. I appealed the decision to the unemployment office and showed the documented evidence to the Illinois Department of Employment Security and won the appeal. The IDES decided that the end of my employment was attributable to the employer, ICS Merrill. I filed a wage claim with the Illinois Department of Labor for below minimum wage pay and won the Wage Claim; I have the check for proof if ICS Merrill tries to deny this. In fact, I have lots, and lots of documented proof. ICS Merrills VP of Human Resources tried to offer me more than my claim was asking to drop the wage claim but I refused because I am a man of integrity and saying it didnt happen would be a lie. I wont lie for anyone, even ICS Merrill EMSI investigative services.
After my employment ended with ICS Merrill, the subject of one of their investigations sued them.
The subject also sued their client and me since my named appeared on the file. This plaintiff admitted to a felony during a deposition but not before ICS Merrill handed over my Social Security Number and Emergency Contact information to this plaintiff. The Social Security Number and my emergency contact information is federally protected pieces of
information. But ICS Merrill said I would be hurt and now they have given out my SSN and family's telephone numbers to the public without my consent.
I caution anyone that does business with ICS Merrill. They are not an honest company and I have the proof. If anyone knows a good labor attorney, have them contact me. ICS Merrill should not be allowed to conduct business in this manner. I don't understand why they are allowed to renew their licenses when they violate the laws.