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Edwards v. Minact Logistical Services

United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Northern Division

June 18, 2018




         BEFORE THE COURT is the Motion [8] to Dismiss filed by Defendant Minact Logistical Services, LLC (“Minact”). Plaintiff Kimberly Edwards (“Edwards”), a former employee of Minact, alleges that Minact committed a litany of wrongs against her, including discriminating and retaliating against her, withholding her overtime wages, denying her sick leave, and violating her privacy. Minact seeks dismissal of Edwards' Complaint on grounds that she has failed to state a claim upon which relief may be granted and failed to timely file her claims. After due consideration of the record, the submissions on file, and relevant legal authority, the Court finds that Minact's Motion [8] should be granted in part and denied in part.

         I. BACKGROUND

         A. Edwards' Complaint

         On November 15, 2017, Edwards filed a pro se pleading, entitled Complaint [1] for Violation of Fair Labor Standards, against Minact. Compl. [1] at 1. The Complaint alleges that Edwards worked as a material handler and forklift operator for Minact, id. at 3, and that Minact failed to pay her required overtime wages, id. at 4. Edwards claims that from April 14, 2014, to August 18, 2016, she worked forty to sixty hours a week, but there were instances when she was not paid for overtime hours. Id. Edwards asserts that she has paycheck stubs to prove her claims. Id.

         Attached to the Complaint is a charge of discrimination form that Edwards submitted to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) on August 7, 2017. EEOC Charge [1-1]. In this form, Edwards states that Minact hired her on March 2, 2014, as a material handler. Id. On March 18, 2016, Minact allegedly denied Edwards a transfer to a welding position, although she was qualified for the position, because of her sex and race, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Id. The EEOC charge further contends that on August 15, 2016, Minact terminated Edwards' employment. Id. Edwards allegedly did not receive her full wages on her last paycheck, id., and she claims that Minact retaliated against her for complaining to the human resources department about the problems she suffered on the job, and discriminated against her because she is a Baptist, heterosexual, young, and married, id.

         Edwards' EEOC “Intake Questionnaire” is also attached to the Complaint, Questionnaire [1-3] at 1, and claims that Edwards' rate of pay was $10.40[1] when she was hired and that her last pay rate was $15.00, id. Edwards wrote in her response to the Questionnaire that she wanted to sue Minact for labor law violations and discrimination. Id. at 4. The EEOC determined that Edwards' claim was not timely filed and mailed her a Dismissal and Notice of Rights on August 10, 2017. EEOC Not. [1-2] at 1.

         The last attachment to Edwards' Complaint is a letter she wrote to her congressional representative on August 4, 2017, Letter [1-4], in which she contends that some days she told her supervisor that he had “left off” her overtime that “never got reimbursed, ” id. at 3. Edwards next asserts that she “ask[ed] for the leave for my son and dad, the sick leave thing, I was denied that.” Id. Edwards further maintains that her privacy was violated during her employment when Minact employees monitored her house, installed a listening device on her forklift to eavesdrop on her, and hacked into her email and phone to listen to her conversations and view her messages, pictures, and videos. Id. at 2-3.

         B. Minact's Motion to Dismiss

         On January 18, 2018, Minact filed a Motion [8] to Dismiss. Minact first contends that Edwards' conclusory allegations that she was denied overtime are insufficient to state a claim under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C. § 201, et seq. Def.'s Mem. [9] at 4. Minact also argues that Edwards is procedurally barred from asserting any discrimination claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2, or under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”), 29 U.S.C. § 621, et seq., because she filed her EEOC charge more than 180 days after the alleged discriminatory conduct occurred, and also failed to file her Complaint in this Court within ninety days of receiving her dismissal notice from the EEOC. Id. at 8. Alternatively, Minact posits that Edwards' Complaint fails to state a plausible claim for discrimination or retaliation because she was not within the protected class under the ADEA and, with regard to her Title VII claims, she has not alleged that other similarly situated employees of a different race, sex, or religion were hired for the position she sought. Id. at 10-11.

         To the extent Edwards may be advancing a claim under the Family Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”), 29 U.S.C. § 2601, et seq., Minact contends that Edwards' conclusory reference to being denied sick leave is insufficient to state a plausible claim for relief. Id. at 16-17. Minact lastly argues that to the extent Edwards brings a claim for invasion of privacy under state law, such claim is time-barred by the applicable statute of limitations. Id. at 17.

         To date, Edwards has not responded to Minact's Motion to Dismiss.


         A. Le ...

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