Willamette Law Online

United States Supreme Court Certiorari Granted


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Integrity Staffing Solutions v. Busk, et al.

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: March 3, 2014
Case #: 13-422
Court Below: 713 F.3d 525 (9th Cir. 2013)
Full Text Opinion: http://www2.bloomberglaw.com/public/desktop/document/Busk_v_Integrity_Staffing_Solutions_Inc_713_F3d_525_20_WH_Cases2d

Labor Law: Whether the Portal-to-Portal Act of 1947 prohibits employees from receiving compensation for time spent in security screenings under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Petitioner, the employer of Respondent, required that Respondent go through a security screening prior to leaving the warehouse after work. Screening was not required prior to entering the warehouse. Respondent filed a claim alleging that Respondent should recieve compensation for the time spent in security screening. 

The trial court dismissed respondents claim, citing that the Portal-to-Portal Act of 1947 amendment to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), 29 U.S.C. § 254(a), does not require that employers compensate employees for “preliminary” or “postliminary” to “principal activity or activities” that employees are “employed to perform” and that the security screenings were “postliminary” to their job duties.  The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the trial court’s decision, citing Steiner v. Mitchell, 350 U.S. 247, 332 (1956), because the Portal-to-Portal Act does not prohibit compensation to be paid for “preliminary” and “postliminary” activities that are “integral and indispensable” to the primary activities of the employer and that the security screenings were not “integral and indispensable.”    

The decision by the Ninth Circuit is in conflict with Second and Eleventh Circuit holdings that security screenings are not “integral and indispensable.”  The Supreme Court granted certiorari to decide whether the Portal-to-Portal Act of 1947 prohibits employees from receiving compensation for time spent in security screenings under the Fair Labor Standards Act.