United States District Court, D. Kansas
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
L. TEETER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Crystal Nicole Kuri filed this action against her former
employer, Defendant Addictive Behavioral Change Health Group,
LLC, under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”),
29 U.S.C. §§ 201, et seq., the Kansas Wage Payment
Act (“KWPA”), K.S.A. §§ 44-313, et
seq., and Kansas state law alleging claims of failure to pay
overtime, wages due, breach of contract, and retaliation. In
response, Defendant asserted counterclaims for unjust
enrichment and breach of contract. Plaintiff now seeks
dismissal of Defendant's counterclaims and partial
summary judgment in her favor on two of her affirmative
claims-Count I for violations of the FLSA and Count V for
FLSA retaliation. Docs. 75, 77.
following reasons, the Court finds that it lacks subject
matter jurisdiction over Defendant's state law
counterclaim for breach of contract and, accordingly,
dismisses without prejudice that claim. The Court, however,
declines to dismiss Defendant's unjust enrichment claim
on either of the bases sought by Plaintiff. The Court
likewise denies Plaintiffs motions for partial summary
judgment on her claims for violation of the FLSA and FLSA
employed Plaintiff as a dispensing nurse from November 2014
to January 2015. Doc. 72 at 2. Pursuant to Plaintiff s
employment contract, Defendant was to pay Plaintiff an hourly
wage of $20.25. Id. Defendant's
employees-including Plaintiff, during the pendency of her
employment-record time worked by clocking in and out of their
shifts through a computer program. Id. at 1-2. For
any hours worked overtime, Defendant's Policies and
Procedures Manual provides:
Non-exempt salaried (hourly) employees will be paid at the
rate of one and one-half times their regular hourly rate of
pay for all time worked in excess of 40 hours in any one
Doc. 79 at 5; Doc. 82 at 1.
October 5, 2016, Plaintiff filed this lawsuit, claiming
Defendant failed to pay her for all hours worked-including
time spent performing work-related tasks both before and
after her scheduled shift-and also failed to pay her
time-and-a-half for overtime. Doc. 1; Doc. 72 at 3.
Plaintiffs claims prompted Defendant to conduct an audit of
its employees' time and pay records, which revealed that
overtime hours had been undercounted for several employees.
Doc. 72 at 3. Specifically, the audit showed that some
employees had been paid “straight time” (i.e.,
their standard hourly wage) for the undercounted overtime
hours, instead of the “time-and-a-half due for those
hours under the terms of their employment. Id. With
respect to Plaintiff, the audit revealed three hours for
which Plaintiff had been paid straight time instead of
overtime wages, a difference of $30.38. Doc. 79 at 6; Doc. 82
at 1. The audit also revealed that Defendant mistakenly
overpaid Plaintiff amounts designated as holiday pay
by $486.00. Id.
attempt to rectify the overtime payment issue, Defendant paid
affected employees an additional time-and-a-half amount for
the undercounted hours. Doc. 72 at 3. Defendant, however, has
not paid Plaintiff any additional amount, arguing it actually
overpaid Plaintiff due to (1) its allegedly mistaken payment
of $486.00 designated as holiday pay, and (2) Plaintiff's
failure to repay a $1, 500.00 loan for car repairs extended
by Defendant during the course of Plaintiff's employment.
Id. at 4-5.
on the above allegations, Plaintiff asserts claims in this
action for (1) violation of the FLSA, (2) violation of the
KWPA, (3) breach of contract, and (4) retaliation under the
FLSA. Doc. 72. Although Plaintiff's FLSA violation claim
was previously conditionally certified as a collective action
under § 216(b) of the FLSA, the case has since been
decertified as a collective action. Docs. 30, 39. Therefore,
Plaintiff's claim for violation of the FLSA proceeds on
an individual basis only. Doc. 39.
asserts counterclaims against Plaintiff for unjust enrichment
(related to the holiday pay allegations) and breach of
contract (related to the car repair loan). Doc. 72.
Plaintiff now moves to dismiss Defendant's counterclaims
pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) and
12(b)(6). Doc. 77. Plaintiff simultaneously moves
for summary judgment with respect to her affirmative claims
for violation of, and retaliation under, the
FLSA. Docs. 75, 77.
Plaintiff's Motion to Dismiss the Counterclaim (Doc. 77)
moves to dismiss Defendant's counterclaims, arguing (1)
that the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over
Defendant's counterclaim for unjust enrichment and its
counterclaim for breach of contract, and (2) with respect to
Defendant's counterclaim for unjust enrichment only, that
Defendant fails to state a claim for relief. Doc. 77. The
Court first addresses Plaintiff's jurisdictional
forth above, Plaintiff moves to dismiss both counterclaims
pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1). For the following reasons, the
Court finds that it lacks subject matter jurisdiction over
Defendant's counterclaim for breach of contract but
exercises supplemental jurisdiction over Defendant's
counterclaim for unjust enrichment.
courts are courts of limited jurisdiction. Marcus v. Kan.
Dep't of Revenue, 170 F.3d 1305, 1309 (10th Cir.
1999). Accordingly, there is a presumption against federal
jurisdiction and the party invoking jurisdiction bears the
burden to show jurisdiction is proper. Id. Where the
court lacks subject matter jurisdiction, it “must
dismiss the cause at any stage of the proceedings in
which it becomes apparent that jurisdiction is
lacking.” Id. (quoting Basso v. Utah Power
& Light Co, 495 F.2d 906, 909 (10th Cir. 1974)).
12(b)(1) motions to dismiss for lack of subject matter
jurisdiction generally fall into one of two categories:
“facial” attacks or “factual”
attacks. Davenport v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 2014 WL
3361729, at *1 (D. Kan. 2014). A facial attack questions the
sufficiency of the allegations as to subject matter
jurisdiction. Id. In reviewing a facial attack on
subject matter jurisdiction, the district court accepts the
jurisdictional allegations as true. Id. A factual
attack exists where a party goes beyond the allegations and
challenges the facts upon which jurisdiction depends.
Id. When reviewing a factual attack, the court does
not presume the truthfulness of the factual allegations.
parties acknowledge that Defendant's counterclaims are
brought under Kansas state law and, therefore, the Court does
not have original jurisdiction over those claims. The parties
dispute whether the Court may exercise supplemental
jurisdiction over the counterclaims. A district court has
discretion to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over state
law claims that are sufficiently related to a pending federal
claim. United Int 'l Holdings, Inc. v. Wharf
(Holdings) Ltd., 210 F.3d 1207, 1220 (10th Cir. 2000).
Specifically, 28 U.S.C. § 1367(a) provides that
“in any civil action of which the district courts have
original jurisdiction, the district courts shall have
supplemental jurisdiction over all other claims that are so
related to claims in the action within such original
jurisdiction that they form part of the same case or
controversy.” This language is interpreted as requiring
that the federal and state law claims derive from “a
common nucleus of operative fact.” City of Chi. v.
Int'l Coll. of Surgeons, 522 U.S. 156, 164-65
(1997). In deciding whether to exercise supplemental
jurisdiction over state law claims, the district court should
consider whether the values of judicial economy, convenience,
and fairness would be served by retaining jurisdiction.
Wittner v. Banner Health, 720 F.3d 770, 781 (10th
Cir. 2013) (“[W]e have said the court should consider
retaining state claims when, ‘given the nature and
extent of pretrial proceedings, judicial economy,
convenience, and fairness would be served by retaining
jurisdiction.'” (quoting Anglemyer v. Hamilton
Cty. Hosp., 58 F.3d 533, 541 (10th Cir.
argues that the Court cannot exercise supplemental
jurisdiction over Defendant's counterclaims because the
counterclaims do not arise out of the same nucleus of
operative fact as Plaintiffs underlying federal claim-i.e.,
her claim for violation of the FLSA. Doc. 78 at 6-9.
Therefore, Plaintiff argues, the Court lacks subject matter
jurisdiction over the counterclaims. Id. The ...