Cases & Deals

White Castle wins summary judgment and defeats class certification in FLSA case

Client(s) White Castle System, Inc.

Jones Day successfully defeated Rule 23 class certification and won summary judgment for client White Castle System, Inc. on the individual Plaintiffs' claims in this case under the Fair Labor Standards Act, Illinois Minimum Wage Law, Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act, and at common law. The Plaintiffs alleged that they and all hourly employees who worked at a White Castle restaurant in Illinois were required to reimburse the Company for drawer shortages and work off-the-clock, that their time records were altered, and that White Castle failed to preserve relevant evidence. They also alleged they were disciplined unlawfully for complaining about White Castle's alleged wage violations. Plaintiffs' motion for class certification was denied on February 25, 2015.

On September 29, 2016, the district court handed White Castle a second significant victory when it granted the company's Motion for Summary Judgment on all of Plaintiffs' claims except for Plaintiffs' claim for limited unpaid overtime, and denied Plaintiffs' Motion for Summary Judgment in its entirety. Specifically, the court granted summary judgment on the Plaintiffs' individual FLSA retaliation claims, FLSA and IMWL minimum wage claims, claims under the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act, quantum meruit and unjust enrichment claims, as well as the claim of spoliation. The ruling greatly curbed Plaintiffs' available damages, limiting them to only their FLSA overtime claims, which are nominal based on their own testimony.

White Castle successfully moved to compel a court-supervised settlement conference over opposition from plaintiffs' counsel. At conference, Plaintiffs agreed to settle their remaining claims, ending the five-year case in full.

Jenkins v. White Castle Management Company, 1:12-cv-07273 (N.D. Ill.)