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Young v. Safelite Fulfillment, Inc.

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

August 26, 2019

MARIO E. YOUNG, JR., Plaintiff,
v.
SAFELLTE FULFILLMENT, INC., et al, Defendants.

          India Lin Bodien, WSBA #44898 Law Offices of India Bodien, Esq. Craig J. Ackermann, WSBA #53330 Brian Denlinger, WSBA #53177 ACKERMANN & TILAJEF, P.C. Attorneys for Plaintiff MARIO E. YOUNG, JR.

          Michael J. Shoenfelt (Pro Hac Vice) Andrew C. Smith (Pro Hac Vice) Daniel J. Clark (Pro Hac Vice) VORYS, SATER, SEYMOUR AND PEASI LLP Sheryl J. Willert, WSBA #08617 Jeffrey M. Wells, WSBA #45840 WILLIAMS, KASTNER & GIBBSPLLC Attorneys for Defendant SAFELITE FULFILLMENT, INC.

          STIPULATED MOTION AND [PRAPOSED] ORDER STAYING CASE PENDING WASHINGTON SUPREME COURT'S RESOLUTION OF CERTIFIED QUESTION IN SAMPSON v. KNIGHT TRANSPORTATION, INC.

          THE HONORABLE JAMES L. ROBART, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         RECTTALS

         WHEREAS, on or about June 3, 2019, Plaintiff MARIO E. YOUNG, JR. ("Plaintiff) filed the operative putative Class Action Complaint for Unpaid and Wrongfully Withheld Wages (the "Complaint") in this action in the Superior Court of the State of Washington in and for the County of King at Seattle [Dkt. #1-2];

         WHEREAS, on July 2, 2019, Defendant SAFELITE FULFILLMENT, INC. ("Defendant") removed Plaintiffs above-described state court action to this Court [Dkt #1] invoking the subject matter jurisdiction of this Court under the Class Action Fairness Act ("CAFA"), which the parties agree is properly invoked in this action;

         Plaintiff's Putative Unpaid Non-Propuctive Time Claims

         WHEREAS, in his Complaint, Plaintiff alleges, inter alia, that in Carranza v. Dovex Fruit Co., 190 Wash.2d 612 (2018) ("Carranza"), the Washington Supreme Court "held that employers who pay agricultural workers on a piece-rate basis must compensate the workers on a separate hourly basis for time spent performing activities that are outside the scope of the piece rate picking work" and that "Defendant's PPP piece-rate compensation system is virtually indistinguishable from the piece rate sche'me[] in Carranza ...." [Dkt. #1-2, ¶¶ 16-17];

         WHEREAS, in his Complaint, Plaintiff further alleges that, in Sampson v. Knight Transportation, Inc., No. 2:17-cv~00028-JCC, 2018 WL 2984825, at *8-9 (W.D. Wash. June 14, 2018) (Coughenour, J.), the court "recogniz[ed] that while ... non-productive time claims were previously denied [class] certification" on the grounds that such claims were not cognizable under Washington law, the court's prior holdings were "called into question by the Washington Supreme Court's recent ruling in Caranza [sic]" [Dkt. #1-2, ¶ 16];

         WHEREAS, based upon Plaintiffs interpretation of Carranza and Sampson, the Complaint asserts causes of action for (1) Violations of RCW 49.46.020, 090 for Failure to Pay Minimum Wage for All Hours Worked, (2) Violation of RCW 49.52.050(2) for Failure to Satisfy Wage Obligations Assumed Through Contract, and (3) Double Damages for Willful and Intentional Withholding of Wages Pursuant to RCW 49.52.050, 070 stemming therefrom [id., ¶¶ 39-52];

         WHEREAS, in support of his Second and Third Causes of Action, Plaintiff alleges that "Defendant paid its mobile technicians and technicians on a piece-rate scheme under which it did not compensate mobile technicians and technicians separately and hourly, or at all, for ... certain non-installation tasks as required under Washington law," including, but not limited to, "loading company vans with equipment, cleaning company vans, traveling in company vehicles between the shop and the install site, paperwork, pre and post-installation inspections, meetings and orientations, and telephone calls," and asserts that "Plaintiff seeks relief on a class-wide basis for unpaid wages for ... all work performed" [id. ¶¶ 2-3; see also id, at ¶¶ 13, 16-17, 42, 47];

         WHEREAS, in Sampson, 2018 WL 2984825, at *8, currently pending but stayed in this District, the plaintiffs similarly contend that the defendant's piece-rate compensation scheme violates Washington's Minimum Wage Act (the "MWA") because there, "drivers are not paid minimum wage for the time they spend conducting pre-trip inspections, completing paperwork, loading and unloading the truck, and refueling";

         WHEREAS, in Sampson, 2018 WL 2984825, at *9, the Court recognized that "[c]ourts in this district... have previously held that Plaintiffs' on-duty, not driving [non-productive time] claims are not cognizable under Washington law," but it reasoned that "these prior holdings are called into question by the Washington Supreme Court's recent ruling in [Carranza]" on the grounds that the Washington Supreme Court's "interpretation of the MWA would seem to apply to all employers," not just agricultural workers;

         WHEREAS, the district court in Sampson "conclude[d] that the law underlying Plaintiffs' on duty, not driving [non-productive time] claim is not clearly determined, and that the Washington Supreme Court is in a better position than this Court to answer this question," see id., and therefore certified the following question to the Washington Supreme Court: "Does the Washington Minimum Wage Act require non-agricultural employers to pay ...


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