Fernandez v. Beldor Group LLC et al

Filing 15

ORDER Approving Settlement Agreement and Recommending that the Case Be Dismissed with Prejudice re 1 Complaint, filed by Maria Fidelina Fernandez, and Recommending that the Court retain jurisdiction until 11/20/2017 to enforce the terms of the settlement. ( Objections to R&R due by 10/4/2017) Signed by Magistrate Judge John J. O'Sullivan on 9/20/2017. (mms)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA CASE NO. 17-22760-CIV-UNGARO/O'SULLIVAN MARIA FIDELINA FERNANDEZ, Plaintiff, v. BELDOR GROUP LLC d/b/a MIB SURGERY and ABEL BELLO, 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 claims for minimum wage and 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 hours, if any, for which the plaintiff was not properly compensated. Additionally, there is a bona fide factual and legal dispute over whether the defendants are subject to the FLSA. The terms of the settlement were announced on the record in open Court. 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 Court1 retain jurisdiction until November 20, 2017 to enforce the terms of the settlement. DONE AND ORDERED in Chambers at Miami, Florida this 20th day of September, 2017. JOHN J. O’SULLIVAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE Copies provided to: United States District Judge Ungaro All counsel of record 1 The parties consented to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction to enforce the terms of the settlement agreement. 2

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