United States District Court, S.D. Ohio, Eastern Division
A. Sargus, Jr. Chief Judge
ELIZABETH A. PRESTON DEAVERS, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
matter is before the Court for consideration of
Plaintiffs' Counsel's Unopposed Motion for an Award
of Attorneys' Fees and Reimbursement of Costs. (ECF No.
40.) For the reasons that follow, Plaintiffs'
Counsel's Unopposed Motion is GRANTED.
class and collective action is brought pursuant to the Fair
Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C.
§201, et seq., and the Ohio Minimum Fair Wage
Standards Act, O.R.C. Chapter 4111. (Compl., ECF No. 1.)
Plaintiffs, who are laborers and laborer foremen, allege that
they were not paid for the time it took them to drive from
the shop to their assigned jobsites. (Id.) On August
14, 2017, upon the parties' consent and pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 636, the assigned District Judge referred to
the Undersigned this matter for the purpose of deciding any
and all motions and/or hearings related to settlement
proceedings. (ECF No. 30.)
September 19, 2017, the Court preliminarily approved the
parties' settlement, conditionally certified a settlement
class, directed that notice be provided to the class members,
and scheduled a fairness hearing. (ECF No. 33.) A fairness
hearing proceeded as scheduled on November 6, 2017. (ECF Nos.
34, 37.) No objections to the proposed settlement were filed
and no members of the class appeared at the hearing.
the fairness hearing, Plaintiffs' Counsel submitted a
proposed Final Order and Judgment Approving Class and
Collective Action Settlement, which the Court has approved.
In accordance with the Court's directive, Plaintiffs'
Counsel also filed their Unopposed Motion for an Award of
Attorneys' Fees and Reimbursement of Costs, which was
supported by detailed billing records. (ECF Nos. 38, 39, 40.)
“An award of attorneys' fees and costs must be
reasonable, meaning an award adequate to attract competent
counsel but one that does not produce a windfall to
attorneys.” Kritzer v. Safelite Sol., LLC, No.
2:10-cv-072, 2012 WL 1945144, at *9 (S.D. Ohio May 30, 2012)
(citing Reed v. Rhodes, 179 F.3d 453, 471 (6th Cir.
2008)). 1994). “The determination of a reasonable fee
must be reached through an evaluation of a myriad of factors,
all within the knowledge of the trial court, examined in
light of the congressional policy underlying the substantive
portions of the statute providing for the award of
fees.” United Slate, Tile & Composition Roofer,
Damp and Waterproof Workers Ass'n, Local 307 v.
G & M Roofing and Sheet Metal Co., 732 F.2d 495, 501
(6th Cir. 1984); see also Ramey v. Cincinnati
Enquirer, Inc., 508 F.2d 1188, 1196 (6th Cir. 1974)
(identifying factors for the trial court's consideration
when determining a reasonable fee). In evaluating whether the
amount of the award is reasonable, this Court has considered
the following factors:
(1) the value of the benefit rendered for the class, (2)
society's stake in rewarding attorneys who produce such
benefits, (3) whether the services were undertaken on a
contingent fee basis, (4) the value of the services on an
hourly basis, (5) the complexity of the litigation, and (6)
the professional skill and standing of the attorneys
Feiertag v. DDP Holdings, LLC, No. 14-CV-2643, 2016
WL 4721208, at *6 (S.D. Ohio Sept. 9, 2016) (citation and
internal quotation marks omitted). In this circuit, district
courts apply a “lodestar” calculation based on
the “prevailing market rate in the relevant
community” when considering the reasonableness of the
fee award. Smith v. Serv. Master Corp., 592 F.
App'x 353, 369 (6th Cir. 2014) (citing Adcock-Ladd v.
Sec'y of Treasury, 227 F.3d 343, 350 (6th Cir.
2000)). The calculation considers “the number of hours
reasonably spent on the case by an attorney times a
reasonable hourly rate.” Smith, 592 F.
App'x at 369.
case, the Settlement Agreement provides for an attorneys'
fee award of $30, 000.00. The Court has reviewed
Plaintiffs' Counsel's Unopposed Motion as well as the
supporting documentation and is satisfied that the requested
fee award in this case is fair and reasonable in light of,
inter alia, the value of the services rendering
considering the hourly rates and hours reasonably and
efficiently expended; the fact that Plaintiffs' Counsel,
who are experienced in this type of class and collective
action, undertook this matter on a contingent basis; and the
complexity of the litigation presented. Accordingly, as to
the request for attorneys' fees, Plaintiffs'
Unopposed Motion (ECF No. 40) is GRANTED and
Plaintiffs' Counsel is AWARDED $30,
000.00 in attorneys' fees.
Counsel also seeks reimbursement of expenses in the amount of
$1, 000.00, which represents out-of-pocket expenses incurred
by class counsel. After reviewing the Unopposed Motion as
well as the supporting evidence (ECF No. 40-2 at PAGEID #
593), the Court is satisfied that the requested amount is
fair and reasonable. As it relates to the request for
reimbursement of expenses, Plaintiffs' Counsel's
Unopposed Motion (ECF No. 40) is therefore
GRANTED. Plaintiffs' Counsel is
AWARDED $1, 000.00 in expenses.