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Symczyk v. Genesis Healthcare Corp. (3d Cir. 2011) (FRCP 68 OOJ Does Not Moot FLSA Claim)

Symczyk v. Genesis Healthcare Corp. (3d Cir. 2011) (FRCP 68 OOJ Does Not Moot FLSA Claim)

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Published by Molly DiBianca

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Published by: Molly DiBianca on Sep 08, 2011
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PRECEDENTIALUNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALSFOR THE THIRD CIRCUIT___________No. 10-3178___________LAURA SYMCZYK, an individual,on behalf of herself and others similarly situated,Appellantv.GENESIS HEALTHCARE CORPORATION;ELDERCARE RESOURCES CORPORATIONd/b/a GENESIS ELDERCARE_______________________On Appeal from the United States District Courtfor the Eastern District of PennsylvaniaD.C. Civil Action No. 09-cv-05782(Honorable Michael M. Baylson)______________Argued March 7, 2011Before: SCIRICA, AMBRO and VANASKIE,
Circuit Judges
.(Filed: August 31, 2011)
 
2GARY F. LYNCH, ESQUIRE (ARGUED)Carlson Lynch36 North Jefferson StreetP.O. Box 7635New Castle, Pennsylvania 16107GERALD D. WELLS, III, ESQUIREFaruqi & Faruqi101 Greenwood Avenue, Suite 600Jenkintown, Pennsylvania 19046Attorneys for AppellantJAMES N. BOUDREAU, ESQUIRE (ARGUED)CHRISTINA TELLADO-WINSTON, ESQUIREGreenberg Traurig2700 Two Commerce Square2001 Market StreetPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania 19103MICHELE H. MALLOY, ESQUIRELittler MendelsonThree Parkway, Suite 14001601 Cherry StreetPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania 19102Attorneys for Appellees_________________OPINION OF THE COURT_________________SCIRICA,
Circuit Judge
.
 
3Laura Symczyk sought relief under the Fair LaborStandards Act (FLSA), 29 U.S.C. §§ 207 and 216(b), onbehalf of herself and all others similarly situated. The DistrictCourt for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania dismissed
Symczyk‟s complaint for lack of su
bject matter jurisdictionafter defendants Genesis HealthCare Corporation andElderCare Resources Corporation extended an offer of  judgment under Fed. R. Civ. P. 68 in full satisfaction of heralleged damages, fees, and costs. At issue in this case iswhether a collective action brought under § 216(b) of theFLSA becomes moot when
, prior to moving for “conditional
certif 
ication” a
nd prior to any other plaintiff opting in to thesuit, the putative representative receives a Rule 68 offer. Wewill reverse and remand.I.From April 2007 through December 2007, Symczyk was employed by defendants as a Registered Nurse atPennypack Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. OnDecember 4, 2009, Symczyk initiated a collective actionunder 29 U.S.C. § 216(b) on behalf of herself and allsimilarly situated individuals, alleging defendants violated theFLSA when they implemented a policy subjecting the pay of certain employees to an automatic meal break deductionwhether or not they performed compensable work duringtheir breaks.
1
On February 18, 2010, defendants filed an
1
 
Symczyk‟s amended complaint identified those “similarlysituated” as
 All persons employed within the three yearspreceding the filing of this action by Defendants. . . , whose pay was subject to an automatic 30minute meal period deduction even when they

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