Fifth Circuit Reverses Decision in Exotic Dancer’s Collective Action Case

Stacey Kibodeaux, an exotic dancer for Heartbreakers Gentlemen’s Club, filed a complaint against the club owners Mike Armstrong and Peggy Armstrong for wrongly classifying her as an independent contractor. Three other former dancers joined her lawsuit and requested the district court certify the case as an FLSA “collective action.” Initially, the district court granted Kibodeaux’s motion for “conditional certification.” The Armstrongs requested the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issue a writ of mandamus, which the Court denied. While this action was pending, the Fifth Circuit decided another case which did away with conditional certification in FLSA cases. The district court then granted the motion for certification and issuance of notice. The Armstrongs again petitioned the Fifth Circuit for a writ of mandamus. This time the Court granted the petition. Find out why and read the dissenting opinion here.