United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
VINCENT HOFFMAN, CURTIS TUCKER, ERIK SKOGLUND, MICHAEL COMPTON, and AARON BRUCE, on behalf of themselves and all other persons similarly situated, known and unknown, Plaintiffs,
ROADLINK WORKFORCE SOLUTIONS, LLC, SCHNEIDER LOGISTICS, INC., and SCHNEIDER LOGISTICS TRANSLOADING AND DISTRIBUTION, INC., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
GARY FEINERMAN, District Judge.
Vincent Hoffman, Curtis Tucker, Erik Skoglund, Michael Compton, and Aaron Bruce, on behalf of themselves and a putative class, bring this suit against RoadLink Workforce Solutions, LLC, Schneider Logistics, Inc., and Schneider Logistics Transloading and Distribution, Inc. (the two Schneider entities will be referred to together as "Schneider"), alleging violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"), 29 U.S.C. § 201 et seq., the Illinois Minimum Wage Law ("IMWL"), 820 ILCS 105/1 et seq., the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act ("IWPCA"), 820 ILCS 115/1 et seq., and the Illinois Day and Temporary Labor Services Act ("IDTLSA"), 820 ILCS 175/5. Doc. 79. A week after suit was filed, Plaintiffs filed an amended complaint. Doc. 4. Several months later, Plaintiffs sought and were granted leave to file a second amended complaint. Docs. 16, 20. After several more months had passed and in response to numerous motions to dismiss and/or to strike, Docs. 34, 36, 38, 54, 59, 62, 65, Plaintiffs sought and were granted leave to file a third amended complaint, Docs. 78-79.
Counts I and II of the third amended complaint allege that RoadLink violated the FLSA by failing to pay the minimum wage and overtime wages. Doc. 79 at ¶¶ 48-65. Counts III and IV allege that Defendants violated the IMWL by failing to pay the minimum wage and overtime wages. Id. at ¶¶ 66-87. Count V alleges that Defendants violated the IWPCA by failing to pay all earned wages at the rate agreed to by the parties. Id. at ¶¶ 88-97. Count VI alleges that Defendants violated the IDTLSA by failing to pay a minimum of four hours pay at the agreed upon rate when Plaintiffs were contracted to work for a third party client company and utilized for less than four hours. Id. at ¶¶ 98-104. Count VII alleges that RoadLink violated the IWPCA by failing to pay for all earned paid time off as part of Plaintiffs' final wages. Id. at ¶¶ 105-113. Counts VIII and IX allege that Schneider violated the IDTLSA by failing to keep and remit accurate time records to RoadLink and by failing to provide Plaintiffs with Work Verification Forms. Id. at ¶¶ 114-125. Counts X and XI allege that RoadLink violated the IDTLSA by failing to provide Plaintiffs with proper Employment Notices and Wage Payment Notices. Id. at ¶¶ 126-139. And Count XII alleges that RoadLink unlawfully retaliated against Tucker and Bruce under the FLSA, IWPCA, and IDTLSA. Id. at ¶¶ 140-146.
Schneider has moved to dismiss all claims against it under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). Doc. 83. RoadLink has moved under Rule 12(b)(6) to dismiss Counts V-VI and X-XII and under Rule 12(f) to strike all references to Plaintiffs as "day or temporary laborers" or "laborers" and to RoadLink as a "day and temporary labor agency." Doc. 85. The court initially stayed discovery pending resolution of the motions, Doc. 89, but it lifted the stay upon tentatively concluding that the motions would be denied in substantial part, Doc. 100. For the following reasons, the motions are granted in part and denied in part.
In considering a motion to dismiss, the court assumes the truth of the third amended complaint's factual allegations, though not its legal conclusions. See Munson v. Gaetz, 673 F.3d 630, 632 (7th Cir. 2012). The court must also consider "documents attached to the [third amended] complaint, documents that are critical to the complaint and referred to in it, and information that is subject to proper judicial notice, " along with additional facts set forth in Plaintiffs' brief opposing dismissal, so long as those facts "are consistent with the pleadings." Geinosky v. City of Chicago, 675 F.3d 743, 745 n.1 (7th Cir. 2012). The following facts are set forth as favorably to Plaintiffs as these materials allow. See Gomez v. Randle, 680 F.3d 859, 864 (7th Cir. 2012).
Schneider assists with managing operations in two Wal-Mart warehouses in Elwood, Illinois. Doc. 79 at ¶¶ 1, 19-20. As part of its contract with Wal-Mart, Schneider staffs the warehouses with laborers who unload Wal-Mart products from trucks and stock them for distribution. Id. at ¶ 2. Schneider staffed the warehouses with laborers it hired directly and also with laborers hired through staffing agencies with whom Schneider contracts, including RoadLink, to supplement its workforce for a temporary period. Id. at ¶¶ 3, 21, 22; Doc. 90 at 4, 6. RoadLink provided Schneider with unskilled or low-skilled laborers, who used Schneider's equipment at the warehouses and performed work integral to, not distinct from, the core of Schneider's business. Doc. 79 at ¶ 4; Doc. 90 at 6.
Plaintiffs were employed by RoadLink, sent to work at the Wal-Mart warehouses, and paid at or near the Illinois minimum wage. Doc. 79 at ¶ 26. Plaintiffs were not compensated for some of their compensable time, including: (1) pre-shift time, when they were "engaged to wait" at the warehouses at least fifteen minutes before the start of their scheduled shifts; (2) post-shift time spent leaving work stations and exiting through security for unpaid half hour-lunch breaks and/or at the end of their shifts, a process that typically took about fifteen minutes; and (3) time spent working that RoadLink rounded down to the nearest fifteen minute interval. Id. at ¶ 23. Schneider failed to keep and remit to RoadLink accurate time records for Plaintiffs' work at the warehouses. Id. at ¶ 25. As a result, in many work weeks, Plaintiffs were paid less than the federal and Illinois minimum wage for all compensable time, and were denied overtime wages for weeks in which they worked more than forty hours. Id. at ¶¶ 27-29.
RoadLink regularly provided Schneider with more laborers than Schneider utilized at the Wal-Mart warehouses. Id. at ¶ 31. Those surplus laborers were utilized for less than four hours per day and were not compensated for a minimum of four hours pay at their regular rate. Id. at ¶ 32.
As part of its compensation package, RoadLink maintained a paid time off ("PTO") policy providing that a regular full-time employee could earn PTO after completing a certain length of service. Id. at ¶ 33. After three months of service, hourly associates would accrue 0.0196 PTO hours per regular hour worked up to a maximum of sixty PTO hours per calendar year; and after five years of service, hourly associates would accrue 0.0385 PTO hours per regular hour worked up to a maximum of eighty PTO hours per calendar year. Ibid. During the course of their employment with RoadLink, Plaintiffs earned PTO but they were not paid for or given all of their PTO when it became due and owing. Id. at ¶¶ 34, 36-38.
When Plaintiffs were dispatched to third party clients, RoadLink failed to provide Plaintiffs with Employment Notices in a form approved by the Illinois Department of Labor. Id. at ¶ 41. RoadLink also failed to provide Plaintiffs with Wage Payment Notices in the form of an itemized statement on the laborers' pay stub or on a form approved by the Illinois Department of Labor. Id. at ¶ 42. Also, on numerous occasions, Schneider failed to provide Plaintiffs with a Work Verification Form when contracted to work a single day at Schneider. Id. at ¶ 44.
On September 14, 2012, the day after Plaintiffs filed this suit, RoadLink reduced Tucker's hours. Id. at ¶ 39. Shortly after Bruce complained about not being paid all of his earned wages, including minimum and overtime wages, RoadLink terminated him. Id. at ¶ 40.
I. Schneider's ...