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Milien v. McClure Properties, Ltd.

United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Fort Myers Division

April 3, 2017

WILLIO MILIEN, RISLER PRESENDIEU SYLAINE BAPTISTE, YOLETTE FILS-AIME, GUERLIN DORELYS, and MARIE PAUL, on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
MCCLURE PROPERTIES, LTD, and WEST COAST TOMATO, LLC, Defendants.

          OPINION AND ORDER [1]

          SHERI POLSTER CHAPPELL UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter comes before the Court upon review of Defendants McClure Properties, Ltd.'s and West Coast Tomato, LLC's Motion to Dismiss the Plaintiffs' First Amended Complaint filed on February 14, 2017. (Doc. 14). Plaintiffs filed a Response on February 28, 2017. (Doc. 19). This matter is ripe for review.

         BACKGROUND

         This matter stems from allegations that Defendants' wage payment practices violated state and federal laws. (Doc. 8 at 2). Plaintiffs instituted this action on December 16, 2016 (Doc. 1), but later filed, as a matter of right, a First Amended Complaint on January 1, 2017. (Doc. 8).

         The five Plaintiffs in this action are either current or former employees of Defendants. (Doc. 8 at 1). Defendants own and operate a commercial tomato farm. (Doc. 8 at ¶¶ 9-10). The central premise of Plaintiffs' claims is that Defendants provided them payroll debit cards through a third-party vendor. (Doc. 8 at ¶ 44). Once payments were distributed, Plaintiffs accessed their wages from an automatic teller machine ("ATM"), resulting in the assessment of numerous administrative fees. (Doc. 8 at ¶¶ 47, 50). Furthermore, the ATM only dispensed certain denominations of currency, often limiting Plaintiffs to disbursements in specific increments. (Doc. 8 at ¶ 50). This prevented Plaintiffs from making full withdrawals where final amounts were less than the $20 disbursement increment. (Doc. 8 at ¶ 50). In addition, due to ATM withdrawal limits, Plaintiffs allege that to receive the full amount of their wages, they were forced to make several withdrawals, and, in turn, to incur more administrative fees. (Doc. 8 at ¶ 50). Upon these facts, Plaintiffs bring five causes of action:

• Count I-violation of Fla. Const. § 24, art. X for unpaid minimum wages;
• Count II-violation of the Migrant and Season Agricultural Worker Protection Act, 29U.S.C. §§1801;
• Count III-violation of Fla. Stat. §§ 532.01 -532.02;
• Count IV-violation of Electronic Funds Transfer Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1693; and
• Count V-a common law unjust enrichment claim (Doc. 8 at 16-23).

Defendants now move to dismiss the Plaintiffs' Amended Complaint. (Doc. 14).

         LEGAL STANDARDS

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a) requires "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief[.]" Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides for dismissal when a plaintiff fails "to state a claim upon which relief can be granted." When considering a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), the reviewing court must accept all factual allegations in the complaint as true and view them in a light most favorable to the plaintiff. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal,556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). This preferential standard of review, however, does not permit all pleadings adorned with facts to survive to the next stage of litigation. The Supreme Court has been clear on this point - a district court should dismiss a claim where a party fails to plead facts that make the claim facially plausible. See BellAtl. Corp. v. Twombly,550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). A claim is facially plausible when the court can draw a reasonable inference, based on the facts pled, that the opposing party is liable ...


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