Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Kumar v. Tech Mahindra (Americas) Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Southeastern Division

July 26, 2017

PANKAJ KUMAR, individually and on behalf of all other similarly situated individuals, Plaintiff,
v.
TECH MAHINDRA (AMERICAS) INC., Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          JOHN A. ROSS UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         This matter is before the Court on Plaintiff Pankaj Kumar's Motion for Conditional Class Certification and Court-Authorized Notice (Doc. 39). The Motion is fully briefed and ready for disposition (Docs. 44-45). For the following reasons, the motion will be granted in part.

         Background

         On June 20, 2016, Plaintiff Pankaj Kumar filed his original complaint against Defendant Tech Mahindra (Americas) Inc. (“Tech Mahindra”), asserting individual unpaid-overtime claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C §§ 201, et seq., and Missouri statutory and common law (Doc. 1). Tech Mahindra is an information technology consulting, business process outsourcing, and network technology services company (Id. at ¶5).

         On October 5, 2016, Kumar amended his complaint to bring his claims on behalf of himself and others similarly situated, attaching a written consent to become a party plaintiff (Doc. 16). In Count I of his amended complaint, Kumar brings an “opt-in” collective action under the FLSA on behalf of the following class:

All persons who are, have been or will be employed by Tech Mahindra as “Software Test Engineers” or “Software Engineers” (and other titles that provide computer application and network environment support) at any time from three (3) years prior to filing this action through the entry of judgment, and whose job it was to troubleshoot issues raised by test teams, deploy code and compile production plans.

(Id. at ¶¶33, 47-57). Counts II and III are brought as Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 class actions alleging violation of the Missouri Minimum Wage Law (“MMWL”), Mo. Rev. Stat. §§ 290.500 et seq., and a state law claim of unjust enrichment (Id. at ¶¶58-70).

         In his instant motion, Kumar requests the Court conditionally certify a collective action and authorize notice to the following class:

All U1-U3 band IT Delivery Engineers employed by Tech Mahindra who were classified as exempt during any workweek at any time three (3) years prior to filing this action through the entry of judgment.

(Docs. 39.1 at 4-5; 41 at 4-5). In his revised proposed Notice, Kumar describes the proposed class as:

Any individual who works or worked for Defendant Tech Mahindra (Americas), Inc. as a U1-U3 band IT Engineer under any of the following job titles: Associate Engineer, Associate Software Engineer, Junior Software Engineer, Junior Technical Engineer, Network Engineer, Senior Network Engineer, Product Engineer, Senior Product Engineer, Test Engineer, Senior Test Engineer, Software Engineer, or Senior Software Engineer, that were classified as exempt during any workweek at any time from June 20, 2013, to present.

(Doc. 45.2).

         In response, Tech Mahindra consents to conditional certification of the class to the extent it includes U1-U3 band IT Engineers, but opposes certification of the class to the extent Kumar seeks to include all such employees who worked from June 20, 2013 (or three years prior to the date he filed his original complaint) to the present. Tech Mahindra argues that the limitations period in this case should be two years, not three, as there is no evidence that it willfully violated the FLSA. Tech Mahindra further argues that the limitations period, whether it is two years or three, should be measured from the date the Court conditionally certifies the class, not from the date Plaintiff filed his original complaint, i.e., the date he initiated this case; or even the date he filed his amended complaint, i.e., the first pleading in which he sought to bring a collective action (Doc. 44 at 1, 7-8).

         In reply, Kumar argues that the FLSA's three-year statute of limitations should apply because he has pled that Tech Mahindra's violation was willful, and that at this conditional-certification stage of the proceeding, no evidence of willfulness is required (Doc. 45 at 3-5). Kumar further contends that, for purposes of defining the scope of the conditionally certified FLSA class, the Court should run the limitations period from the date he initiated this action by filing his original complaint (Id. at 4-5). In Kumar's view, running the limitations period from the date the Court conditionally certifies the class would “improperly restrain the claims of the FLSA Collective members who have already filed their consent ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.