Alamo Claim Service
Unpaid Overtime Lawsuit
This case is brought by two Plaintiffs who worked for Alamo Claim Service and State Farm Mutual, the Defendants, as Claim Representatives. The lawsuit alleges that the Defendants misclassified the two Plaintiffs and other Claim Representatives as independent contractors and that Claim Representatives regularly worked in excess of 40 hours a week for which they were not paid overtime wages, in violation of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). This case seeks to compel Defendants to pay Plaintiffs and a class of similarly situated Claims Representatives all of the overtime wages they earned in the past three years. Click here to read the Complaint.This case was filed in the Central District of Illinois and was assigned to the Honorable James E. Shadid and U.S. Magistrate Judge Jonathan E. Hawley.
Court Grants Approval of Settlement – Posted February 1, 2017
In February 2016, the Parties settled the Plaintiffs’ claims. In November 2016, the Court granted approval of the settlement. Click here to read the Order Approving the FLSA Settlement. Settlement checks were distributed to Plaintiffs at the end of 2016.
Discovery Begins – Posted October 2, 2015
On July 13, 2015, Magistrate Judge Hawley held a scheduling conference and set deadlines for the next stages of the case. At this time the discovery period is scheduled to end on August 1, 2016 and we are scheduled to go to trial on March 6, 2017.
We are now in the discovery phase of the case. During discovery, Plaintiffs and Alamo/State Farm demand and exchange information, such as documents, needed to understand the relevant facts of the case. The Parties also take depositions of various fact witnesses. On August 26, 2015, both Parties exchanged initial disclosures. Initial disclosures inform the other side about potential witnesses and documents that are available. Plaintiffs have also served discovery demands on Alamo and State Farm in the form of interrogatories and document requests. Both Alamo and State Farm are in the process of responding to our discovery requests and we are reviewing the documents they produce.
Court Grants Conditional Certification – Posted March 31, 2015
On March 31, 2015 Judge Shadid granted Claimants’ Motion for Conditional Certification, allowing Plaintiffs to send a notice of the lawsuit and opportunity to join to all putative class members. Click here to read the Order. The Court authorized notice to all Claim Representatives who worked for State Farm through Alamo since October 10, 2010 in an office outside of Illinois, who were classified as independent contractors, paid a day rate, and worked more than 40 hours per week. The deadline to join the case was June 8, 2015.
Court Denies Defendants’ Motion for Reconsideration – Posted September 16, 2014
On September 16, 2014 Judge Shadid denied the Defendants’ request that he reconsider his prior decision or let them appeal his decision to a higher court. This decision clears the way for the Court to hear Plaintiffs’ motion to send notice to the class. Judge Shadid set an October 16 deadline for the Defendants to respond to Plaintiffs’ motion. Click here to read the Order.
Waiting for a Decision on Conditional Certification – Posted September 15, 2014
A ruling on the Plaintiffs’ motion for Conditional Certification has been delayed by a series of motions that the Defendants have filed. Instead of responding to Plaintiffs’ motion, Defendants initially asked the Court to dismiss the case against them or to move it to Texas. Plaintiffs opposed that motion and the Court ruled in favor of the Plaintiffs. Defendants then asked the Court to reconsider its decision or to give them permission to appeal the decision to a higher Court. The Parties are waiting on the Court’s decision on that motion. In the meantime, the Plaintiffs have asked the Court to toll the statute of limitations on class members’ claims while the various motions are being resolved, and we are waiting for the Court’s ruling on that issue as well.
Plaintiffs File Motion for Conditional Certification – Posted February 3, 2014
On January 17, 2014, Plaintiffs filed a Motion for Conditional Certification requesting that the Court give them permission to send notice to all persons who have worked for Alamo Claim Service or CIS Alamo in State Farm offices outside of Illinois as claims adjusters who were classified as independent contractors, were paid a day rate, worked more than 40 hours in a week, and were not paid overtime premium pay for working more than 40 hours in a workweek during any period during the three years prior to the filing of this complaint and the date of final judgment in this matter. Click here to read Plaintiffs’ brief.
Frequently Asked Questions – Posted October 21, 2013
Answers to Common Questions:
Which employees can be part of this lawsuit?
All persons who have worked for Alamo Claim Service in State Farm’s offices as Claim
Representatives since October 10, 2010, who were classified as independent contractors and paid a day rate for their work. Please contact us if you have questions about whether you qualify to be part of this lawsuit.
What work locations are covered by this lawsuit?
The claims in this lawsuit cover all State Farm worksites throughout the country, except for any offices in Illinois.
What claims are covered in this case?
The lawsuit at present covers claims for overtime pay under the FLSA. The specific violations claimed are that Defendants misclassified Claim Representatives as independent contractors and failed to pay them overtime wages.
The FLSA allows claims for overtime wages going back two years (or three years if the employer acted willfully) from when someone affirmatively joins the case by filing a Consent to Sue form.
What damages are sought?
Damages sought under the FLSA include back overtime pay, an equal amount of liquidated damages, attorneys’ fees, interest, and any costs of litigating the case.
How do I join the case?
To bring claims under the FLSA for back wages and an equal amount of liquidated damages, you must affirmatively join the case by filing a Consent to Sue form.
Do I have to pay to join the case?
No. The attorneys are handling this case on a contingent basis and will only be paid when we win through a settlement or final judgment. Under the FLSA, when plaintiffs win an overtime case, defendants must pay the plaintiffs’ costs and attorneys’ fees.
Can I wait to file my Consent to Sue form?
You are not part of the FLSA case until your Consent to Sue form is returned to the plaintiffs’ attorneys and then filed with the Court. If you delay in filing the Consent to Sue, part or all of your FLSA claims may be barred by the “statute of limitation.” Once a Notice is authorized by the Court, you must generally return the Consent to Sue form within the terms of the notice or the Court may not allow you to join this case.
Can Alamo Claim Service or State Farm fire me or take action against me for joining the case?
The law prohibits retaliation for joining an overtime lawsuit. If any employee suffered retaliation, Defendants would be liable for at least double the injury caused to the employee, and possibly additional damages. Notify us immediately if you think any retaliation has occurred. Retaliation is rare in overtime cases, because an employer can suffer such serious penalties.