On July 20, 2012, Judge David C. Norton of the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina, granted conditional certification to a group of Farmers Insurance Exchange (“Farmers”) property claims representatives who alleged that Farmers has a policy that discourages the representatives from accurately reporting their hours in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
In the case, MacGregor et al v. Farmers Insurance Exchange, the insurance adjustors claim that Farmers maintained a policy requiring them to keep records of all time worked and that the company also required prior approval to work overtime. Additionally, in many instances, according to the plaintiffs, the company did not approve the overtime and employees worked overtime without being able to claim the time worked.
The court’s decision comes nearly a year after the same court denied a broader motion for certification by the plaintiffs. In its earlier denial, the court cited the Supreme Court’s Wal-Mart v. Dukes decision as “illuminating” and held that Farmers had no systematic policy of denying overtime pay, rather that there may have been, at best, occasional decisions by individual supervisors that violated the company’s policies.
The most recent decision does not cite the Dukes decision and only grants conditional certification to a class of Farmers adjustors who shared a specific supervisory chain in Farmer’s Atlanta region.
The Employment Law Group® law firm represents the insurance adjustors in MacGregor and has an extensive nationwide wage and hour practice representing employees whose rights have been violated, including nonpayment of wages and denial of overtime pay.