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Fuentes v. St. Abanoub Group, Inc.

United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Orlando Division

February 27, 2018

RAFAEL FUENTES, Plaintiff,
v.
ST. ABANOUB GROUP, INC., Defendant.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          DANIEL C. IRICK, UNITES STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This cause comes before the Court for consideration without oral argument on the following motion:

MOTION: AMENDED JOINT MOTION FOR APPROVAL OF SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT (Doc. 36)FILED: January 12, 2018

THEREON it is RECOMMENDED that the motion be GRANTED.

         I. BACKGROUND

         On September 15, 2016, Plaintiff filed a Complaint against Defendant alleging two causes of action arising under the Fair Labor Standards Act (the FLSA); specifically, a cause of action for recovery of unpaid minimum wages and a cause of action for retaliation in violation of the FLSA. Doc. 1. On October 21, 2016, Defendant filed its Answer and Affirmative Defenses. Doc. 9.

         On January 12, 2018, the parties filed an amended joint motion to approve settlement (the Motion), to which the parties attached their proposed settlement agreement (the Agreement).[1]Docs. 36; 36-1. The Agreement provides that Defendant will pay Plaintiff $12, 000.00 to settle Plaintiffs FLSA claims: $1, 500.00 in unpaid overtime wages, $1, 500.00 in liquidated damages, and $9, 000.00 in attorney fees. Docs. 36 at 3; 36-1 at 3. The parties request that the Court approve the Agreement and dismiss this case with prejudice. Doc. 36 at 6.

         II. LAW

         The settlement of a claim for unpaid minimum or overtime wages under the FLSA may become enforceable by obtaining the Court's approval of the settlement agreement.[2] Lynn's Food Stores, Inc. v. U.S. Dept of Labor, 679 F.2d 1350, 1352-53 (11th Cir. 1982). The Court, before giving its approval, must scrutinize the settlement agreement to determine whether it is a fair and reasonable resolution of a bona fide dispute of plaintiff s FLSA claims. See Id. at 1353-55. In doing so, the Court should consider the following nonexclusive factors:

. The existence of collusion behind the settlement.
. The complexity, expense, and likely duration of the litigation.
. The state of the proceedings and the amount of discovery completed.
. The probability of plaintiff s success on the merits.
. The range of possible recovery. ...

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