Established 1958 ~ Hardball Business Litigation & Complex Negotiations

PA District Court Declines to Dismiss PMWA Based on Factual Insufficiency

In Philadelphia Metal Trades Council v. Konnerud Consulting West, Civil Action No. 15-5621, 2016 WL 1086709 (E.D. Pa. 2016) the Court found that Plaintiff’s Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act (“PMWA”) claim is not preempted by the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) and declined to dismiss Plaintiffs claim. Plaintiff was an unincorporated association consisting of a number of local union chapters. Defendants were subcontractors conducting business and employing workers at Plaintiffs shipyard. Defendants, who are foreign corporations, were required to provide a certified payroll of their employees.

According to Plaintiffs, Defendants paid workers less than one and one half times their regular hourly wage for hours worked in excess of forty. Plaintiffs filed a complaint and alleged that employees worked over forty hours a week and that Defendants failed to pay them overtime wages in violation of the PMWA and the Pennsylvania Wage Payment and Collection Law (“WPCL”).

Defendant moved to dismiss Plaintiffs Complaint based on the fact that Plaintiffs PMWA claim was factually inadequate and preempted by the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). As to the first argument, the Court found that Plaintiff’s claim under the PMWA was factually sufficient because Plaintiff plead sufficient facts to give rise to a plausible claim for relief under the PMWA. The Court found that Plaintiffs attachment of payroll audits which supported the allegations that Defendants were violating the PMWA as dispositive. As to the second issue, the Court found that Plaintiffs PMWA claim was not preempted by the FLSA because Plaintiff did not explicitly bring an opt-out class action which Defendants argue would conflict with the FLSA. Even if Plaintiff brought an opt-out PMWA class action as described by Defendant, its claim would still not be preempted by the FLSA.

For more information, call our Philadelphia employment lawyers for Fair Labor Standards Act in Philadelphia and South Jersey at the Law Office of Sidkoff, Pincus & Green at 215-574-0600 or contact us online.