SOURCE: Nichols Kaster, PLLP

Nichols Kaster, PLLP

October 23, 2009 12:55 ET

Judge Grants Conditional Certification in Michigan Bell Overtime Lawsuit Brought by Nichols Kaster, PLLP

DETROIT, MI--(Marketwire - October 23, 2009) - On October 22, 2009, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Michigan granted conditional certification to Michigan Bell Telephone Company call center employees who allege that Michigan Bell regularly denied them pay for working off-the-clock without compensation.

Judge Nancy G. Edmunds wrote that the Plaintiffs had met their burden of establishing that they and potential plaintiffs were "similarly situated" victims of a common policy or plan of Michigan Bell's that violated the FLSA. The Court ruled that Plaintiffs presented sufficient evidence demonstrating that: (1) Michigan Bell required Plaintiffs to be open and available to take a call at the start of their shift and thus required Plaintiffs to log-in to Michigan Bell's computer systems beforehand; (2) most calls that extend beyond the end of a shift last less than seven minutes, thus Plaintiffs are systematically disadvantaged by Michigan Bell's "rounding" policy; and (3) Michigan Bell's expectations concerning employee performance required off-the-clock work. Therefore, Judge Edmunds granted Plaintiff's motion to send judicial notice of the action to current and former call center employees from call centers in Saginaw, Southfield, Detroit, Kalamazoo and Port Huron.

This case, Fisher v. Michigan Bell Telephone Company, 2:09-cv-10802-NGE-RSW, relies on recent Sixth Circuit precedent, O'Brien v. Ed Donnelly Enter., Inc., 575 F.3d 567, 583 (6th Cir. 2009), and follows similar recent decisions granting conditional certification to call center workers in Bishop v. AT&T, Corp., 2:08-cv-00468-DWA-RCM (W.D. Penn. 2009) and Russell v. Illinois Bell Telephone Co., 575 F. Supp. 2d 930 (N.D. Ill. 2008).

The Plaintiffs are represented by James H. Kaster, Megan I. Brennan and David E. Schlesinger of Nichols Kaster, PLLP, which has offices in Minneapolis, Minnesota and San Francisco, California. Additional information about the case is located at www.nka.com or may be obtained by calling Nichols Kaster, PLLP toll free at (877) 448-0492.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Megan Brennan
    Nichols Kaster, PLLP
    (612) 256-3233