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Regan v. City of Hanahan

United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Charleston Division

April 3, 2017

James Regan and Mason Underwood, on behalf of themselves and all other similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
City of Hanahan, Defendant.

          ORDER AND OPINION

          RICHARD MARK GERGEL UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE.

         This matter is before the Court on the City of Hanahan's partial motion to dismiss Plaintiffs second amended complaint under Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. (Dkt. No. 39.) For the reasons set forth below, the Court denies the motion.

         I. Background

         Plaintiffs James Regan and Mason Underwood seek to bring a collective action under 29 U.S.C. § 216(b) to recover for wages, including overtime premiums, they allege they were not paid in accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 201, et seq. ("FLSA"). Plaintiffs also seek recovery under the South Carolina Payment of Wages Act, S.C Code Ann. § 41-10-10, et. seq. ("SCPWA"), which they assert qualifies to be treated as a class action under Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Plaintiff Regan also claims that the City retaliated against him personally for complaints he made that are protected under the FLSA. The City has moved to dismiss only Plaintiffs' third cause of action for damages under the SCPWA.

         II. Relevant Facts

         In their third cause of action, Plaintiffs allege that the City is liable to them for violations of the SCPWA, explaining that

         55. Defendant owes Plaintiff and the members of the Plaintiff class "wages" as defined in § 41-10-10(2) of the [SCPWA], to compensate them for labor rendered to Defendant, as promised to Plaintiff and the members of the Plaintiff class and as required by law.

         56. During Plaintiffs' employment in Defendant's Fire Department, Defendant promulgated and distributed various Policies and Procedures . . . [which] contains the following provisions regarding Defendant's wage and hour practices for Fire Department employees:

a. that "Federal law on overtime shall be followed";
b. that "if [an] employee's sleeping period or meal time is interrupted by a call to duty, the interruption is counted as hours worked";
c. that "Employees working overtime shall be compensated by either overtime pay or the use of compensatory time. Overtime pay and compensatory time shell be given at a rate of time and one-half for all hours of overtime worked"; and
d. that "The Employee may determine whether to accept overtime pay or compensatory time."

         57. Defendant knowingly allowed Plaintiffs to "work off the clock" and failed to pay Plaintiffs for all labor rendered to Defendant.

         58. Defendant has failed to pay Plaintiffs all wages due, as required by ...


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