Artwell v. Reliable Property Services, LLC et al

Filing 14

ORDER approving settlement, REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS, Recommending that the case be dismissed with prejudice and that the Court retain jurisdiction until 2/16/2012 to enforce the settlement terms.( Objections to R&R due by 11/7/2011). Signed by Magistrate Judge John J. O'Sullivan on 10/20/2011. (mkr)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA CASE NO. 11-23171-CIV-LENARD/O'SULLIVAN JERMAINE ARTWELL, Plaintiff, v. RELIABLE PROPERTY SERVICES, LLC, ROBERT PUSHKIN, Defendants. ______________________________/ ORDER APPROVING SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT AND RECOMMENDING THAT THE CASE BE DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE THIS MATTER came before the Court following a settlement conference before the undersigned and the Court having conducted a hearing concerning the settlement. THE COURT has heard from counsel and considered the terms of the settlement agreement, the pertinent portions of the record, and is otherwise fully advised in the premises. This case involves a claim for unpaid overtime compensation under the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. §201, et seq ("FLSA"). In reviewing a settlement of an FLSA private claim, a court must "scrutiniz[e] the settlement for fairness," and determine that the settlement is a "fair and reasonable resolution of a bona fide dispute over FLSA provisions." Lynn Food Stores v. United States, 679 F.2d 1350, 1352-53 (11th Cir. 1982). A settlement entered into in an adversarial context where both sides are represented by counsel throughout litigation "is more likely to reflect a reasonable compromise of disputed issues." Id. The district court may approve the settlement in order to promote the policy of encouraging settlement of litigation. Id. at 1354. In this case, there is a bona fide factual dispute over the number of overtime hours worked by the plaintiff and a legal dispute over whether the defendants are subject to the FLSA. The Court has reviewed the terms of the settlement agreement including the amount to be received by the plaintiff and the attorney’s fees and costs to be received by counsel and finds that the compromise reached by the parties is a fair and reasonable resolution of the parties' bona fide disputes. Accordingly, it is ORDERED AND ADJUDGED that the parties' settlement agreement (including attorney’s fees and costs) is hereby APPROVED. It is further RECOMMENDED that this case be dismissed with prejudice and that the Court retain jurisdiction until February 16, 2012 to enforce the terms of the settlement. DONE AND ORDERED, in Chambers, at Miami, Florida this 20th day of October, 2011. JOHN J. O’SULLIVAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE Copies furnished to: U.S. District Judge Lenard All counsel of record 2

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