United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lafayette Division
D. CAIN, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the court is a Motion to Dismiss [doc. 10] filed by defendant
Marlin McClure under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(1)-(3) and 12(b)(6). Plaintiff Waveland Services, Inc.
(“Waveland”) opposes the motion. Doc. 12.
suit arises as a dispute between Waveland, a Louisiana
business that “provides surface preparation and coating
services” to oil platforms off the Gulf Coast and the
coast of California, and Waveland's former employee,
Marlin McClure. McClure worked for the company from July 2004
until May 2018, from its Louisiana- and California-based
locations. Doc. 1, ¶¶ 8-10.
filed a class action suit against Waveland and other
companies in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of California on June 14, 2018. See McClure v.
Brand Energy Svcs., LLC, No. 2:18-cv-1726 (E.D. Cal.).
He raised claims under Newton v. Parker Drilling
Management Services, Ltd., 881 F.3d 1078 (9th Cir.
2018), in which the Ninth Circuit held that California wage
and overtime law applied as surrogate federal law to work
performed on the Outer Continental Shelf (“OCS”).
McClure alleged that Waveland and other defendants had
violated those state laws by, inter alia, failing to
properly calculate and pay the premium wages he and other
workers were owed for working multi-day shifts on the
off-shore platforms. Id. at docs. 1, 17.
February 2019 the California district court stayed the action
in light of the Supreme Court's consideration of
Parker Drilling. The Supreme Court reversed the
decision in June 2019, noting that state law was only adopted
under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, 43 U.S.C. §
1333(a), to the extent federal law did not address the issue
at hand. Because the Fair Labor Standards Act
(“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C. § 201 et seq.,
already handled the minimum wage and overtime issues, it
applied exclusively on the OCS. Parker Drilling Mgmt.
Servs., Ltd. v. Newton, __ U.S. ___, 139 S.Ct. 1881
(2019). The parties to the California suit submitted a joint
status report on August 21, 2019, in which McClure indicated
that he would file a second amended complaint seeking relief
under the overtime provisions of the FLSA. Id. at
doc. 30, pp. 7-8.
then filed suit in this court on September 16, 2019, seeking
a declaratory judgment that its overtime payment calculations
comply with the FLSA. Doc. 1. McClure moves to dismiss the
suit, arguing that (1) the court lacks subject matter
jurisdiction because Waveland does not have standing to
pursue declaratory judgment; (2) the court lacks personal
jurisdiction over McClure; (3) the case was brought in an
improper venue; (4) Waveland fails to state a claim on which
relief may be granted; and (5) the court should exercise its
discretion under the Declaratory Judgment Act to dismiss the
suit in favor of parallel litigation in California. Doc. 10,
att. 1. Waveland opposes the motion. Doc. 12. Meanwhile,
McClure has filed a motion for leave to amend his complaint
in the California suit in order to add FLSA claims against
Waveland, dismiss state law claims invalidated by Parker
Drilling, and dismiss the other named defendants.
McClure, No. 2:18-cv-1726, at doc. 36. Waveland
opposes the motion, arguing undue delay and prejudice.
Id. at doc. 38. The California district court
conducted a hearing on November 22, 2019, and the parties are
now awaiting a decision on the matter.
Law & Application
handling motions to dismiss, the court should resolve
jurisdictional attacks before addressing attacks on the
merits of a claim. Forras v. Rauf, 812 F.3d 1102,
1105 (D.C. Cir. 2016). Accordingly, the court reviews the
bases for dismissal in the order laid out above.
Subject Matter Jurisdiction
Standard of review
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) permits dismissal of a case
for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The burden lies with
the party asserting jurisdiction. Ballew v. Cont'l
Airlines, Inc., 668 F.3d 777, 781 (5th Cir. 2012).
“[I]n examining a Rule 12(b)(1) motion, the district
court is empowered to find facts as necessary to determine
whether it has jurisdiction.” Machete Prods., LLC
v. Page, 809 F.3d 281, 287 (5th Cir. 2015). Where the
court is required to weigh evidence and resolve factual
disputes, it attaches no presumption of truthfulness to the
plaintiff's allegations. Montez v. Dep't of
Navy, 392 F.3d 147, 149 (5th Cir. 2004).