RALEIGH, NC. – The US District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina recently dismissed a class action lawsuit filed by Mountaire Farms employees at North Carolina plants. 

The case dealt with workers seeking overtime pay from the chicken processor for donning and doffing personal protective equipment (PPE) when returning and leaving meal periods.

According to court documents, the plaintiffs filed the original complaint in January. Mountaire filed the first motion to dismiss in April. 

Attorneys for Mountaire argued that the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals already had established precedent in a similar case. The Mountaire defendants also argued that “the North Carolina Wage and Hour Act, specifically exempts companies who are subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act from its overtime and minimum wage coverage.”

“None of these statutes provides a vehicle for recovering overtime or minimum wages, and plaintiffs’ attempt to use them to maneuver around and avoid application of the NCWHA’s exemption is improper,” Mountaire said in its defendant memorandum.