United States District Court, S.D. Florida
J. O'SULLIVAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
MATTER is before the Court on the Defendants' Motion for
Entry of Costs of Litigation Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1920 (DE # 215, 1/12/17). The parties jointly consented to
Magistrate Judge jurisdiction on all matters pursuant to 28
U.S.C. §636(c). (DE# 82, 9/8/15). This matter was
reassigned to the undersigned by Judge Moreno, United States
District Court for the Southern District of Florida, on
September 21, 2015, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §636(c). (DE #
January 12, 2017, the defendants filed the Defendants'
Motion for Entry of Costs of Litigation Pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 1920 (DE # 215, 1/12/17). On January 18, 2017, the
plaintiffs filed the Plaintiffs' Response in Opposition
to Defendants' Motion for Entry of Costs of Litigation
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1920 (DE # 216, 1/18/17). On
October 3, 2017, the defendants filed the Reply to Plaintiffs
Response in Opposition to Defendants' Motion for Entry of
Cots of Litigation Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1920 (DE #
234, 10/3/17). Having carefully considered the filings and
law, the undersigned issues the following Order
GRANTING the Defendants' Motion for
Entry of Costs of Litigation Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1920 (DE # 215, 1/12/17).
February 23, 2015, Yenisey Perez and Cintia Cini
(collectively, “plaintiffs”) filed their First
Amended Complaint against Anastasia M. Garcia P.A. and
Anastasia M. Garcia (collectively “defendants”).
See First Amended Complaint under 29 U.S.C. 201-216
Overtime Wage Violations and Retaliation under 29 U.S.C.
215(A)(3) (DE# 9, 2/23/15) (hereinafter “First Amended
Complaint”). The First Amended Complaint alleged two
causes of action against the defendants: federal overtime
wage violation (Count I) and retaliation (Count
On July 26, 2016, the defendants filed a Motion for Summary
Judgment (DE # 179, 7/26/16) regarding the retaliation claim.
On December 30, 2016, Final Judgment (DE # 214, 12/30/16) was
entered in favor of the defendants with respect to the
retaliation claim. Accordingly, the defendants prevailed in
this matter with respect to the retaliation claim.
defendants request reimbursement in the amount of $2,
316.99 for costs associated with the fees for
printed or electronically recorded transcripts necessarily
obtained for use in the case.
defendants seek costs pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1920 and
29 U.S.C. § 216(b).
29, United States Code, Section 216(b) directs the Court to
award costs to the prevailing party in an action brought
under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Rule 54(d)(1) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that costs other
than attorneys' fees shall be allowed to the prevailing
party unless the court otherwise directs. Fed.R.Civ.Pro.
54(d)(1). A “prevailing party, ” for purposes of
the rule, is a party in whose favor judgment is rendered.
See Util. Automation 2000, Inc. v. Choctawhatchee Elec.
Co-op., Inc., 298 F.3d 1238, 1248 (11th Cir. 2002).
Accordingly, “[a]n enforceable judgment establishes a
plaintiff as a prevailing party because the plaintiff has
received at least some relief based upon the merits of a
parties dispute who the prevailing party is in the instant
case. The plaintiffs assert that the defendants are not the
prevailing party and not entitled to costs. The plaintiffs
further argue that the plaintiffs are the prevailing party
because their overtime claims and retaliation claims were
intertwined. The plaintiffs note that the Court bifurcated
this matter and that the plaintiff's FLSA claims were
litigated first, the jury found in favor of the plaintiffs on
the issue of willfulness, liquidated damages were imposed by
the Court, and final judgment was entered against the
defendants jointly and severally. Thereafter, the retaliation
claims were litigated, cross motions for summary judgment
were filed regarding same and the Court found in favor of the
defendants on the retaliation claims. The plaintiffs maintain
that the defendants are not the prevailing party in this
matter because the plaintiffs prevailed on their overtime
claims and their retaliation claims were intertwined with the
plaintiffs support their argument with the case of Cent.
Motor Co. v. Shaw, 3 So.3d 367 (Fla. 3d DCA 2009).
However, in Shaw, the defendants were seeking
attorneys fees pursuant to the Florida offer of judgment
statute, and in this case, there was no offer of judgment,
and the defendants are not seeking recovery under that
plaintiffs also cite to Caballero v. Sum Yum Gai,
Inc., No. 08-23018-CIV, 2011 WL 1675001 (S.D. Fla. May
3, 2011) in support of their position. The plaintiffs note
that the Court in Caballero stated “that the
plaintiffs' minimum wage claims [were] intertwined with
the plaintiffs' overtime claims and that the plaintiffs
should be awarded the full fees incurred for the minimum wage
claims. Id. at *4.
instant case is distinguishable from Caballero.
Here, the plaintiffs' overtime and retaliation claims
were sufficiently distinct that they were bifurcated and the
Court would have held two separate trials, had the defendants
not prevailed on the plaintiffs' retaliation claims at
the summary judgment stage. See Order Bifurcating
Trial (DE# 26, 4/20/17) (stating that “[t]he Parties
will first litigate the Plaintiffs' claims under the Fair
Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and the Parties will proceed to
trial on the FLSA claims in accordance with the Court's
Scheduling Order (D.E. 15). After the FLSA trial, the Parties
will litigate the Plaintiffs' retaliation
claims.”). Additionally, litigation on the retaliation
claim was stayed while the parties litigated the overtime
claims. See Plaintiffs' Motion to Lift Stay as
to Retaliation Claims, to Re-open Discovery and to Permit the
Filing of Dispositive Motions (DE# 86 at 1, 9/24/15) (noting
that “Plaintiffs also have . . . retaliation claims,