Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk, 569 U.S. ___, 133 S. Ct. 1523 (2013)

Laura Symczyk, a registered nurse, brought this collective action on behalf of herself and other similarly situated employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA") based upon the employer's alleged practice of automatically deducting 30 minutes of time worked per shift for meal breaks even when the employees performed compensable work during the breaks. When the employer answered the complaint, it simultaneously served an offer of judgment upon Symczyk under Fed. R. Civ. P. 68 in the amount of $7,500 for allegedly unpaid wages in addition to such reasonable attorney's fees, costs and expenses as the court may determine. After Symczyk failed to respond to the offer, the employer filed a motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, arguing that because it had offered Symczyk complete relief on her individual damages claim, she no longer possessed a personal stake in the outcome of the collective action, thus rendering it moot. The district court granted the motion to dismiss, but the court of appeals reversed, holding that although the offer mooted plaintiff's individual claim, it did not moot the collective action. The United States Supreme Court reversed the court of appeals. Assuming without deciding that the employer's unaccepted offer of judgment mooted Symczyk's individual claim, the Supreme Court concluded her lawsuit (including the collective action) was appropriately dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. See also Busk v. Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc., 2013 WL 1490577 (9th Cir. 2013) (FLSA collective action and state law class action are not inherently incompatible even though the opt in/opt out rules differ; employees stated FLSA claims for unpaid time spent undergoing a security screening; and lunch period claims were properly dismissed under FLSA, but remand was necessary to determine issue under Nevada state law).