United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Alexandria Division
H.L. Perez-Montes United States Magistrate Judge
the Court is a Motion to Amend the Collective Action Notice
Procedure Due to Change in Facts (“Motion to
Amend”) (Doc. 119) filed by Plaintiff Hayward Dean
(“Dean”). Defendant Akal Security, Inc.
(“Akal”) opposes. (Doc. 121). Because there is no
evidence that the current notice procedure ordered by this
Court is insufficient, Dean's Motion to Amend (Doc. 119)
filed this action under 29 U.S.C. § 216(b) on behalf of
himself and other similarly situated current and former
employees against Akal for alleged violations of the Fair
Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). Dean is an Air
Security Officer (“ASO”) responsible for the
supervision of deportees during flights back to their home
country. (Doc. 46). After depositing deportees in their home
country, Dean alleges he would return with the rest of the
flight crew to the United States. (Doc. 46). Dean alleges
Akal failed to pay him and a class of similarly situated
employees minimum wages for “lunch breaks”
employees were forced to work through. (Doc. 46).
further alleges some of these wages - in the event that the
hour “lunch break” worked through would have
caused the employee to work over forty (40) hours per week -
are overtime wages remaining unpaid. (Doc. 46). Dean also
alleges Akal ignored the evidence of hours actually worked by
ASOs, and uniformly deducted ASO pay by one hour on every
return flight to the United States. (Doc. 46).
Court granted in part and denied in part Dean's Motion
for Collective Action Certification under the FLSA (the
“Order”). (Doc. 116). This Court conditionally
certified the class and authorized Dean to send notice and
consent forms, via mail or email, to potential
opt-ins. (Doc. 116). The Court also authorized Dean
to post notice to prospective class members at Akal's
Alexandria, Louisiana and San Antonio, Texas locations in the
same areas they are required to post FLSA notices until the
opt-in period closes for every potential opt-in employee.
Court ordered the parties to confer and submit a joint
proposed notice for approval in accordance with the Order.
(Doc. 116). On November 30, 2017, the parties filed a Notice
of Joint Submission of Proposed Notice of Action and Form
Consent to Joint Lawsuit (the
“Notice”). (Doc. 118). Now, Dean seeks to amend the
Order due to a change in facts. (Doc. 119).
Law and Analysis
participate in a collective action, each employee must give
his consent in writing by notifying the court of his intent
to opt in. See 29 U.S.C. §
216(b). District courts are provided with
discretionary power to implement the collective action
procedure through the sending of notice to potential
plaintiffs. See Rodriguez v. Alsalam, Inc., 2017 WL
699820 at *2 (E.D. La. 2017) (citing Lima v. Int'l
Catastrophe Sols., Inc., 493 F.Supp.2d 793, 797 (E.D.
La. 2007)). The notice must be “timely, accurate and
informative.” See id.; Hoffmann-La Roche
Inc. v. Sperling, 493 U.S. 165, 169-170 (1989).
FLSA action, “the notice must be the best practicable,
reasonably calculated, under all the circumstances, to
apprise interested parties of the pendency of the action and
afford them an opportunity to present their objections. The
notice should describe the action and the plaintiffs'
rights in it.” Richardson v. Wells Fargo Bank,
N.A., 839 F.3d 442, 455 (5th Cir. 2016).
Supreme Court has remarked that the benefits of the
collective action “depend on employees receiving
accurate and timely notice concerning the pendency of the
collective action, so that they can make informed decisions
about whether to participate.” Hoffmann-La Roche
Inc., 493 U.S. at 170. The district courts enjoy a
“managerial responsibility to oversee the joinder of
additional parties to assure that the task is accomplished in
an efficient and proper way.” Id. Thus, the
district courts have a substantial interest in overseeing
communications that are transmitted in single actions
involving multiple parties. Id.
parties affirm that as of December 1, 2017, Akal lost its
contract with the Department of Homeland Security, and is no
longer the provider (or employer) of ASOs at the Alexandria,
Louisiana and San Antonio, Texas locations at issue in this
case. (Docs. 119, 121). Since Akal no longer controls the
premises, Dean now seeks to amend the Order to authorize
notice via email and mail as an alternative to
posting at the jobsite. (Doc. 119). Akal opposes Dean's
motion arguing that Akal was not ordered to post notice, but
rather, Dean was authorized to do so. (Doc. 121). Akal also
asserts that sending notice via both mail and email is
redundant and encourages potential class members to join the
litigation. (Doc. 121). Akal also argues Dean has not
produced evidence to indicate notice via mail or email is
insufficient. (Doc. 121).
stands, the Order authorizes, upon approval of Notice and
consent forms, Dean to mail or email the Notice and
consent forms to potential class members. (Doc. 116). Dean is
also authorized by this Court to post Notice to prospective
class members at Akal's Alexandria, Louisiana and San
Antonio, Texas locations. (Doc. 116). While the record is
clear that Akal no longer has the contract for ASOs for these
locations (Doc. 119, 121), Dean may still mail or
email the approved Notice and consent forms to potential
class members. Seeing no evidence to indicate otherwise, the
Court finds the option of either ...