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Sigala v. ABR of VA, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Maryland, Southern Division

November 4, 2015

CHRISTIAN SIGALA, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
ABR OF VA, INC., et al., Defendants

         For Cristian Sigala, Juan Jose Flores, Gabriel Wong, each on behalf of himself and others similarly situated, Plaintiffs: Alvaro Augusto Llosa, LEAD ATTORNEY, The Law Offices of Roberto Allen LLC, Wheaton, MD; Roberto N Allen, Law Offices of Roberto Allen LLC, Wheaton, MD.

         For ABR of VA, Inc., William Antonio Chavez, Erica Alvarez, Defendants: Jennifer Anukem, LEAD ATTORNEY, J. Anukem & Associates LLC, Bethesda, MD; Sean R. Hanover, PRO HAC VICE, HANOVER LAW, PC, Fairfax, VA.

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         MEMORANDUM OPINION

         GEORGE J. HAZEL, United States District Judge.

         In this case. Plaintiffs. Christian Sigaia. Juan Jose Flores, and Gabriel Wong (collectively. " Plaintiffs" ), each on behalf of

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themselves and others similarly situated, bring a purported collective action alleging violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (" FLSA" ), 29 U.S.C. § § 201 et seq., the Maryland Wage and Hour Law, Md. Code Ann., Lab. & Empl. § § 3-401 et seq., and the Maryland Wage Payment and Collection Law. Md. Code Ann., Lab. & Empl. § § 3-501 et seq. Defendants. ABR of VA, Inc. (" ABR" ). William Antonio Chavez, and Erica Alvarez (collectively. " Defendants" ), have moved to dismiss the Complaint for lack of personal jurisdiction. ECF Nos. 6 & 10. The Court has reviewed the record and deems a hearing unnecessary. See Local Rule 105.6 (D.Md.). For the reasons that follow, the Court will deny Defendants' Motions.

         I. BACKGROUND

         ABR is a Virginia corporation with its principal place of business in Virginia, and whose principal business is the restoration of water damaged buildings in Maryland. Virginia, and West Virginia. ECF No. 1 at ¶ 4. Chavez and Alvarez are both residents of Fairfax County. Virginia and throughout the Plaintiffs' tenures of employment were owners, agents, and / or principals of ABR. Id. at ¶ ¶ 37-38, Chavez and Alvarez were both responsible for the approval of ABR's payroll practices. Id.

         Plaintiffs and all similarly situated employees they seek to represent are current and former employees of ABR who were employed during the period of June 17, 2012 through June 17, 2015. Id. at ¶ 9. Each named Plaintiff and all potential opt-in plaintiffs, worked for Defendants for some period of time in the state of Maryland as laborers restoring water-damaged buildings. Id. at ¶ ¶ 11, 17.

         Plaintiffs filed the present action on June 17, 2015. see ECF No. 1. and summonses were returned executed for Chavez and Alvarez on June 22, 2015. ECF Nos. 4 & 5. and for ABR on June 23, 2015. ECF No. 3. Alvarez, acting pro se, filed a Motion to Dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction on July 23, 2015, purportedly on behalf of all Defendants, ECF No. 6. Defendants then filed a second motion on September 15, 2015, this time represented by counsel, also arguing that the court lacked personal jurisdiction over all Defendants.[1] ECF No. 10. Defendants contend that Chavez and Alvarez have " no contacts with Maryland." and rather that they are domiciled and work in Virginia. ECF No. 6 at ¶ 23: ECF No. 10 at ¶ 23. Defendants also contend that ABR " does not conduct activities in Maryland." that it " does not have agents that conduct activities in Maryland," and that " on information and belief, [ABR] never accepted a [Maryland] contract." ECF No. 10 at ¶ ¶ 27-28 & 34: see also ECF No. 6 at ¶ ¶ 28-29. Plaintiffs, in response, appended affidavits of each named Plaintiff to their memoranda in opposition to Defendants' Motions to Dismiss, in which they averred that they each worked on job sites for Defendants in various locations in Maryland and that Defendants Chavez and Alvarez occasionally came with them to job sites in Maryland. See ECF Nos. 7-1, 7-2, 7-3, 12-1, 12-2 & 12-3. Plaintiffs also included screenshots from ABR's website, which advertises that ABR conducts restoration services in " Virginia,

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[Washington,] DC, [and] Maryland." See ECF Nos. 7-4, 7-5, 12-4 & 12-5.

         II. ...


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