United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Monroe Division
KIMBERLY DEFRESE-REESE, ET AL.
HEALTHY MINDS, INC., ET AL.
L. HAYES, MAG. JUDGE
A. DOUGHTY, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the Court is Defendants Healthy Minds, Inc., Healthy
Minds of Bastrop, LLC (“Healthy Minds, LLC”), and
Angela Nichols' (“Nichols”) Motion for
Summary Judgment [Doc. No. 18]. Plaintiffs Kimberly
Defrese-Reese, Tyanna Jones, and LeMatthew Wilson oppose the
motion. [Doc. No. 20]. Defendants did not file a reply
memorandum, but did file an additional affidavit. [Doc. No.
following reasons, Defendants' motion is DENIED.
FACTS AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
brought this action under the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29
U.S.C. § 201, et seq. (“FLSA”).
They seek to have the matter certified as a collective
action. They allege that Defendants failed to pay them and
others overtime for hours worked in excess of forty per work
Healthy Minds, Inc., and Healthy Minds, LLC are Louisiana
entities which provide direct care for disabled persons in
their homes. Nichols allegedly controlled the day-today
operations of these organizations.
Defrese-Reese was employed as an “office manager,
” but was paid on an hourly basis. Tyanna Jones, and
LeMatthew Wilson were employed as direct care workers and
also paid on an hourly basis.
LAW AND ANALYSIS
judgment “shall [be] grant[ed] . . . if the movant
shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material
fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A fact is
“material” if proof of its existence or
nonexistence would affect the outcome of the lawsuit under
applicable law in the case. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A dispute about a
material fact is “genuine” if the evidence is
such that a reasonable fact finder could render a verdict for
the nonmoving party. Id.
moving party can meet the initial burden, the burden then
shifts to the nonmoving party to establish the existence of a
genuine issue of material fact for trial. Norman v.
Apache Corp., 19 F.3d 1017, 1023 (5th Cir. 1994). The
nonmoving party must show more than “some metaphysical
doubt as to the material facts.” Matsushita Elec.
Indus. Co., Ltd. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574,
586 (1986). In evaluating the evidence tendered by the
parties, the Court must accept the evidence of the nonmovant
as credible and draw all justifiable inferences in its favor.
Anderson, 477 U.S. at 255.
Timing of the Motion for Summary Judgment
as Plaintiffs point out, discovery has not yet been conducted
in this case. While there is no prohibition against
Defendants' filing of a motion for summary judgment prior
to the completion, or at least the substantial completion, of
discovery, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provide some
protection against premature motions for summary judgment.
Plaintiffs did not specifically move for relief under or cite
Rule 56(d), but cited cases which have applied the rule. Rule
56(d) provides that, “[i]f a nonmovant shows by
affidavit or declaration that, for specified reasons, it
cannot present facts essential to justify its opposition, the
court may: (1) defer considering the motion or deny it; (2)
allow time to obtain affidavits or declarations or to take
discovery; or (3) issue any other appropriate order.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(d). Rule 56(d) “is designed to
‘safeguard non-moving parties from summary judgment
motions that they cannot adequately oppose.'”
Raby v. Livingston, 600 F.3d 552, 561 (5th Cir.
2010) (citing Culwell v. City of Fort Worth, ...