On June 22, 2017, Judge Willis B. Hunt of the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia granted final approval to a confidential settlement agreement between 146 plaintiffs and Gentiva Health Services, Inc., one the country’s largest home health care service providers, related to unpaid overtime wages under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). 

Case Background

On May 10, 2010, former clinicians Lisa Rindfleisch, Tiffany Melendez, Michelle Gentile, Laurie Baker, and Christina Nelmes filed a nationwide class action against Gentiva seeking overtime wages under the FLSA.Originally filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, the case was later transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.

Since December of 2008, Gentiva paid the majority of its Clinicians on a pay per-visit plan (the “PPV Plan”) Under the PPV Plan, Clinicians are paid a set fee for each type of visit.In addition, Clinicians under the PPV Plan are also paid for non-visit related work.While Gentiva referred to these payments as non-visit fees, unlike the visit fees they were set based solely on the amount of time worked on the non-visit task. Plaintiffs asserted that under Gentiva’s “pay per visit” (PPV) compensation plan, they were misclassified as exempt from overtime, because the fee-basis regulation does not permit payments based on the amount of time worked, unless overtime is paid.

The lawsuit was originally granted preliminarily class certification in April 2011, and plaintiffs thereafter won their case regarding liability. The district court subsequently decertified the class, and Plaintiffs ultimately pursued damages in a mass action.

The case is styled: Rindfleishch v. Gentiva Health Services, Case No. Case 1:10-cv-03288-SCJ, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division