United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO
DISMISS AMENDED COMPLAINT 
Gerswhin A. Drain United States District Judge.
August 6, 2019, 2019, Plaintiff Chadwick Smith
(“Plaintiff”) filed the instant collective action
under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) for
unpaid overtime against Defendant Guidant Global, Inc.
See ECF No. 1. On September 18, 2019, Plaintiff
amended his Complaint to add Defendant Guidant Group, Inc.
See ECF No. 8.
before the Court is Defendants' Guidant Global, Inc. and
Guidant Group, Inc. (together, the “Defendants”)
Motion to Dismiss Amended Complaint, filed on October 2,
2019. ECF No. 10. Plaintiff filed a Response on October 23,
2019. ECF No. 15. Defendants filed their Reply on November 6,
2019. ECF No. 16. A hearing on Defendants' Motion was
held on December 10, 2019. For the reasons that follow, the
Court will DENY Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Amended
Complaint [#10] as it relates to the issue of joint
employment relationship status. Further, the Court finds the
consent issue of Defendants' Motion MOOT.
asserts that he was an hourly employee for Defendants from
approximately 2011 until 2017, working as a Coordinator in
Owensville and Edwardsport, Indiana. ECF No. 8, PageID.25,
27. He maintains that he reported his hours to Defendants on
a regular basis. Id. at PageID.27. According to
Plaintiff, he and the “Putative Class Members”
regularly worked over forty hours in a week. Id. In
fact, Plaintiff alleges that he “routinely worked 60 to
90 hours per week.” Id. Plaintiff asserts in
his Amended Complaint that Defendants paid him and the
“Putative Class Members” according to an illegal
“straight time for overtime” payment scheme in
violation of the FLSA. Id. at PageID.28. Plaintiff
seeks to recover unpaid overtime and other damages due to him
and the “Putative Class Members” in this
collective action. Id. at PageID.24.
Guidant Global, Inc. is a Michigan corporation that maintains
its headquarters in Southfield, Michigan. Id. at
PageID.25. Defendant Guidant Group, Inc. is a foreign
corporation that conducts business and is headquartered in
Michigan. Id. Together, Defendants maintain that
they have no record of Plaintiff working for them “as a
W-2 employee.” ECF No. 10, PageID.271 n.1. They contend
that Plaintiff is instead “an employee and/or an
independent contractor” for a staffing agency, Warren
Steele & Associates. Id. Defendant Guidant
Group, Inc. purportedly “helped to facilitate three
different assignments of [Plaintiff], ” as an employee
and/or independent contractor of Warren Steel &
Associates, by “lending administrative
alleges that Defendants are a “single enterprise”
under “common control” with a “common
business purpose, ” as they complement and depend on
each other to “operate, staff, and otherwise satisfy
their obligations.” ECF No. 8, PageID.25. Further, he
asserts that Defendants “control the terms, methods,
and types of pay” which he and other “Putative
Class Members” receive. Id. at PageID.27.
commenced this collective action under the FSLA only against
Defendant Guidant Global, Inc. See ECF No. 1. He
attached his “Consent to Join Wage Claim” against
Defendant Guidant Group, Inc. to his initial Complaint.
Id. at PageID.10. On September18, 2019, Plaintiff
amended his Complaint to also include Defendant Guidant
Group, Inc. See ECF No. 8. On October 22, 2019,
Plaintiff filed his additional consent to participate in this
collective action lawsuit against Defendant Guidant Global,
Inc. See ECF No. 14, PageID.286.
filed their instant Motion on October 2, 2019. ECF No. 10.
They argue that Plaintiff's Amended Complaint should be
dismissed for two reasons: (1) that Plaintiff's consent
form is defective as to Defendant Guidant Global, Inc.
because it only names Defendant Guidant Group, Inc.; and (2)
that Plaintiff failed to adequately plead a “joint
employment relationship” such that Defendant Guidant
Group, Inc. plausibly could be considered his employer.
Id. at PageID.269. Plaintiff opposed Defendants'
Motion on October 23, 2019, asserting that Defendants'
first claim is now moot and contending that he did adequately
plead Defendant Guidant Group, Inc. as his employer. ECF No.
15, PageID.293. Defendants filed their Reply to
Plaintiff's opposition on November 6, 2019. ECF No. 16.
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) allows the court to make an
assessment as to whether the plaintiff has stated a claim
upon which relief may be granted. See Fed. R. Civ.
P. 12(b)(6). To withstand a motion to dismiss pursuant to
Rule 12(b)(6), a complaint must comply with the pleading
requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2).
See Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-78 (2009).
Rule 8(a)(2) requires “a short and plain statement of
the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief, in
order to give the defendant fair notice of what the . . .
claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.” Bell
Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)
(quotation marks omitted) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2);
Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957)).
To meet this standard, a complaint must contain sufficient
factual matter, accepted as true, to “state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570; see also Iqbal,
556 U.S. at 678-80 (applying the plausibility standard
articulated in Twombly).
considering a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss, the Court must
construe the complaint in a light most favorable to the
plaintiff and accept all of his factual allegations as true.
Lambert v. Hartman, 517 F.3d 433, 439 (6th Cir.
2008). While courts are required to accept the factual
allegations in a complaint as true, Twombly, 550
U.S. at 556, the presumption of truth does not apply to a
claimant's legal conclusions. See Iqbal, 556
U.S. at 678. Therefore, to survive a motion to dismiss, the
plaintiff's pleading for relief must provide “more
than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of
the elements of a cause of action will not do.”
Ass'n of Cleveland Fire Fighters v. City of
Cleveland, 502 F.3d 545, 548 (6th Cir. 2007) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555) (internal citations and