Ohio District Court Issues Significant Conditional Certification Decision

On April 5, 2011, Southern District of Ohio Judge Gregory L. Frost granted conditional certification of an FLSA overtime rights action brought by call center operators employed by Safelite Solutions, LLC. The case is entitled Patricia W. Heaps v. Safelite Solutions, LLC, 2:10-cv-00729-GLF-NMK (S.D. Ohio). Stressing the low standard of review applicable to conditional certification, the Judge granted conditional certification based primarily on the submission of only two declarations sworn out by two of the originating plaintiffs and indicating that Safelite maintained an unwritten policy of requiring its phone operators to perform various unpaid activities at the start of the workday, during meal breaks, and at the end of the workday. The decision also contains some other significant rulings, such as (i) a three-year period applies to the class definition since the issue of willfulness is not properly litigated at the class certification stage; (ii) defendant is required to provide plaintiffs’ counsel with the email addresses of all class members if known; and (iii) the notice form should mention that opt-in plaintiffs might have to participate in discovery.

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