United States District Court, D. Maine
ORDER ON FINAL SETTLEMENT APPROVAL AND
Torresen United States Chief District Judge.
the Court is a request for final approval of the settlement
of all claims in this suit (ECF No. 83) and a motion for
attorneys’ fees and costs (ECF No. 84). For the reasons
stated below, the settlement is APPROVED and the motion for
attorneys’ fees is GRANTED.
case concerns wages owed to delivery and shuttle drivers of
Scholarship Storage d/b/a Business as Usual
(“BAU”) under the Fair Labor Standards Act (the
“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C. §§ 207, 255, and
under Maine law, 26 M.R.S. §§ 664(3), 629(1).
Through negotiations, the parties agreed to settle their
dispute in advance of trial. In January 2016 I authorized
Plaintiffs to circulate notices of the proposed settlement to
potential class and collective action members. Order Notice
to Class and Establishing Schedule for Further Action (ECF
No. 69). In February 2016, after notice had been sent to the
class, Plaintiffs’ attorney notified me that he had
failed to notify approximately 42 class members of the
proposed settlement and that the individual settlement
computations sent to those class members were inaccurate.
Letter from Jeffrey Neil Young Esq. (ECF No. 87). In March
2016, I authorized counsel to send an amended notice to the
class. Counsel then appeared before me for a final fairness
hearing on May 23, 2016. I must now decide whether to finally
approve the settlement of all claims in this matter and
whether to award attorneys’ fees to Plaintiffs’
Rule of Civil Procedure 23(e) requires the following for
approval of a class action settlement:
(1) The court must direct notice in a reasonable manner to
all class members who would be bound by the proposal.
(2) If the proposal would bind class members, the court may
approve it only after a hearing and on finding that it is
fair, reasonable, and adequate.
(3) The parties seeking approval must file a statement
identifying any agreement made in connection with the
(4) If the class action was previously certified under Rule
23(b)(3), the court may refuse to approve a settlement unless
it affords a new opportunity to request exclusion to
individual class members who had an earlier opportunity to
request exclusion but did not do so.
(5) Any class member may object to the proposal if it
requires court approval under this subdivision (e); the
objection may be withdrawn only with the court’s
Civ. P. 23(e). The following factors are relevant for
determining whether a settlement is “fair, reasonable,
and adequate” under Rule 23(e)(2):
(1) comparison of the proposed settlement with the likely