Cases & Deals

U.S. Steel wins summary judgment in putative nationwide FLSA collective action of "donning & doffing"

Client(s) U.S. Steel Corporation

Jones Day defended United States Steel Corporation in a putative nationwide collective action in which plaintiffs seek to represent all non-exempt production and maintenance employees at U.S. Steel's facilities. Plaintiffs allege that they and the putative class were not paid overtime under the FLSA for time they spent donning, doffing, washing up after work, laundering their work clothes, and traveling to and from their work stations. On October 15, 2009, the district court granted summary judgment for U.S. Steel on plaintiffs' donning, doffing, and washing claims, holding that U.S. Steel carried its burden in showing that the plaintiffs were not entitled to compensation for the time they spend engaged in these activities under 29 U.S.C. § 203(o). The court also granted U.S. Steel's motion for summary judgment on the plaintiffs' laundering claim because such activity does not constitute work under the FLSA. However, the district court declined to grant summary judgment for U.S. Steel as to the plaintiffs' claim for time spent walking between their work stations and their assigned locker rooms. U.S. Steel subsequently filed a motion to certify the travel-time issue for interlocutory appeal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b). The district court granted U.S. Steel's 1292(b) motion, and the Seventh Circuit issued an order allowing the appeal on March 25, 2010.

Sandifer, et al. v. United States Steel Corporation, Case No. 2:07-CV-00443-RM (N.D. Ind., Hammond Div.); Sandifer v. United States Steel Corporation, Case No. 10-1821, 10-1866 (7th Cir.); Sandifer v. U.S. Steel, 678 F.3d 590 (2012), cert. granted, 133 S. Ct. 1240 (2013)