United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Orlando Division
DALTON JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Brevard Extraditions Inc., doing business as U.S. Prisoner
Transport, moves to dismiss Plaintiff Kevin Langellier's
first amended complaint for failure to state a claim upon
which relief may be granted. (Doc. 22
(“Motion”).) Plaintiff responded. (Doc. 43.) On
review, the Motion is denied.
was Defendant's employee from July 2018 to February 2019,
where he worked as an Extradition Agent responsible for
transporting prisoners across the country via bus or van.
(Doc. 19, ¶¶ 2, 23-27.) During his employment,
Plaintiff claims he regularly worked over forty hours per
week without the required overtime compensation.
(Id. ¶¶ 3-4, 28.) Further, Plaintiff says
he was not paid minimum wage for all hours he worked.
(Id. ¶¶ 5, 29.) Alleging he and other
similarly situated employees were not paid overtime and
minimum wages, Plaintiff sued for violations of the Fair
Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). (Id.
¶ 6.) Plaintiff raised an FLSA overtime violation claim
(id. ¶¶ 38-43 (“Count I”)) and
minimum wage violation claim (id. ¶¶ 44-47
now moves to dismiss the amended complaint for failure to
state a claim. (Doc. 22.) Before Plaintiff's response,
the parties jointly stipulated to the dismissal of Count I
with prejudice. (Docs. 34, 38.) Plaintiff then responded
(Doc. 43), so the matter is ripe.
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) permits dismissal for
“failure to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted.” A complaint “that states a claim for
relief must contain . . . a short and plain statement of the
claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). A complaint does not need detailed
factual allegations; however, “a plaintiff's
obligation to provide the grounds of his entitlement to
relief requires more than labels and conclusions, and a
formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action
will not do.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (alterations and internal quotation
marks omitted). “When there are well-pleaded factual
allegations, a court should assume their veracity and then
determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement
to relief.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
679 (2009). Such a determination is a context-specific task
requiring the court “to draw on its judicial experience
and common sense.” Id.
argues the complaint fails to state a claim for failure to
pay overtime compensation and minimum wage. (Doc. 22.) As the
parties have stipulated to the dismissal of Plaintiff's
overtime compensation claim (see Docs. 34, 38), the
Motion is due to be denied as moot on that claim. So the
Court addresses the sufficiency of Plaintiff's minimum
wage claim only.
contends Plaintiff failed to allege facts to establish a
minimum wage claim and instead relied solely on “three
conclusory, factually-devoid allegations of unpaid minimum
wages.” (Doc. 22, pp. 20-21.) The Court disagrees. In
discussing the pleading requirements for FLSA cases, the U.S.
Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has stated,
“the requirements to state a claim of a FLSA violation
are quite straightforward. The elements that must be shown
are simply a failure to pay overtime compensation and/or
minimum wages to covered employees and/or failure to keep
payroll records in accordance with the Act.”
Sec'y of Labor v. Labbe, 319 Fed.Appx. 761, 763
(11th Cir. 2008) (citing 29 U.S.C. §§ 206, 207,
and 215(a)(2) and (5)). Plaintiff has made that showing for
his minimum wage claim.
is whether Plaintiff is a covered employee. To be eligible
for minimum wage under the FLSA, an employee must demonstrate
he is a covered employee. Josendis v. Wall to Wall
Residence Repairs, Inc., 662 F.3d 1292, 1298 (11th Cir.
2011). To do so, an employee must show either enterprise or
individual coverage. See Id. at 1298-99; see
also 29 U.S.C. § 207(a)(1). Enterprise coverage
exists if the employer: (1) “has employees engaged in
commerce or in the production of goods for commerce, or that
has employees handling, selling, or otherwise working on
goods or materials that have been moved in or produced for
commerce by any person”; and (2) “has at least
$500, 000 of ‘annual gross volume of sales made or
business done.'” Polycarpe v. E & S
Landscaping Serv., Inc., 616 F.3 d 1217, 1220 (11th Cir.
2010) (quoting 29 U.S.C. § 203(s)(1)(A)). Individual
coverage exists if the employee is “engaged in
commerce” or “in the production of goods for
commerce.” See Thorne v. All Restoration Servs.,
Inc., 448 F.3d 1264, 1266 (11th Cir. 2006) (citing 29
U.S.C. § 207(a)(1)). This occurs when the employee is
“ directly participating in the actual movement of
persons or things in interstate commerce by (i) working for
an instrumentality of interstate commerce . . ., or (ii) by
regularly using the instrumentalities of interstate commerce
in his work.” Id. (citations omitted).
Plaintiff has adequately alleged both enterprise and
individual coverage. For enterprise coverage, Plaintiff
alleged Defendant was his employer and is an enterprise
covered by the FLSA. (Doc. 19, ¶¶ 11-12.) Plaintiff
also alleged “Defendant engaged in interstate commerce,
” “Defendant . . . has employees handling,
selling, or otherwise working on goods or materials that have
been moved in or produced for commerce, ” and
“[a]t all times relevant to this action, the annual
gross sales volume of Defendant exceeded $500, 000 per
year.” (Id. ¶¶ 13-14.) These
allegations show enterprise coverage at the pleading stage.
See, e.g., Anderson v. Cuenca Safety & Crime
Prevention, Inc., No. 8:13-cv-1500-T-33AEP, 2013 WL
5587941, at *3 (M.D. Fla. Oct. 9, 2013); Dobbins v.
Scriptfleet, Inc., No. 8:11-cv-1923-T-24-AEP, 2012 WL
601145, at *2 (M.D. Fla. Feb. 23, 2012).
individual coverage, Plaintiff alleged he and the putative
class members were engaged in the production of goods for
commerce as they “routinely and regularly used and/or
handled items moving in the stream of commerce including:
Defendant's clients' prisoners, radios, guns, gun
magazines, gun holsters, gun belts, gun ammunition, pepper
spray, tasers, uniforms, cellular phones, and office supplies
used to record prisoner transfer information.” (Doc.
19, ¶¶ 17-18.) Also Plaintiff alleged he and the
putative class members regularly used instrumentalities of
interstate commerce (like the Internet on his phone, dispatch
radios, and credit cards) and traveled to prisoner pick-up
location susing interstate highways and purchased food and
gas along the way. (Id. ¶¶ 19-20.) These
allegations show individual coverage. See Anderson, 2013
WL 5587941, at *2-3.
is whether Plaintiff has shown a failure to pay minimum wage.
“To establish a prima facie violation of the
FLSA, a plaintiff must allege ‘as a matter of just and
reasonable inference that the wages paid to him did not
satisfy the requirements of the FLSA.'”
Commings v. Orange Lake Country Club, No.
6:12-cv-397-Orl-19KRS, 2012 WL 13136502, at *2 (M.D. Fla.
July 6, 2012) (quoting Donovan v. New Floridian Hotel,
Inc., 676 F.2d 468, 475 n.2 (11th Cir. 1982)). So at the
pleading stage, Plaintiff must simply “allege[ ]
sufficient facts to raise a reasonable expectation that
discovery will reveal evidence that he is owed compensation
for work he performed while employed by defendants” and