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Beltran v. Interexchange, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Colorado

July 18, 2019

JOHANA PAOLA BELTRAN, LUSAPHO HLATSHANENI, BEAUDETTE DEETLEFS, ALEXANDRA IVETTE GONZALEZ, JULIANE HARNING, NICOLE MAPLEDORAM, LAURA MEJIA JIMENEZ, SARAH CAROLINE AZUELA RASCON, CAMILA GABRIELA PEREZ REYES, CATHY CARAMELO, LINDA ELIZABETH, And those similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
INTEREXCHANGE, INC., USAUPAIR, INC., GREATAUPAIR, LLC, EXPERT GROUP INTERNATIONAL INC., d/b/a Expert AuPair, EURAUPAIR INTERCULTURAL CHILD CARE PROGRAMS, CULTURAL HOMESTAY INTERNATIONAL, CULTURAL CARE, INC., d/b/a Cultural Care Au Pair, AUPAIRCARE INC., AU PAIR INTERNATIONAL, INC., APF GLOBAL EXCHANGE, NFP, d/b/a/ Aupair Foundation, AMERICAN INSTITUTE FOR FOREIGN STUDY, d/b/a Au Pair in America, AMERICAN CULTURAL EXCHANGE, LLC, d/b/a GoAuPair, AGENT AU PAIR, A.P.E.X. AMERICAN PROFESSIONAL EXCHANGE, LLC, d/b/a ProAuPair, 20/20 CARE EXCHANGE, INC., d/b/a The International Au Pair Exchange, ASSOCIATES IN CULTURAL EXCHANGE, d/b/a GoAuPair, and GOAUPAIR OPERATIONS, LLC, d/b/a GoAuPair, Defendants.

          ORDER GRANTING FINAL APPROVAL OF CLASS AND COLLECTIVE ACTION SETTLEMENT

          CHRISTINE M. ARGUELLO UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on Plaintiffs' Motion for Final Approval of Class and Collective Action Settlement. (Doc. # 1205.) The parties reached a Settlement Agreement on January 9, 2019, as a result of intensive, non-collusive, arm's length negotiations facilitated by United States Magistrate Judge Michael E Hegarty. (Doc. # 1208-1 at 2-49) The Court gave its preliminary approval to the Settlement Agreement on January 23, 2019 (Doc. # 1191), and the parties subsequently sent the Settlement Notice to potential class members and collected claim forms and requests for exclusion from them. On May 16, 2019, Plaintiffs filed the Motion for Final Approval of Class and Collective Action Settlement presently before the Court. (Doc. # 1205.) The Court heard argument on Plaintiffs' request for final approval of the Settlement Agreement on July 18, 2019. See (Doc. # 1228.)

         Being intimately familiar with the lengthy, labyrinthine history of this matter and having thoroughly reviewed the Settlement Agreement, the Court GRANTS Plaintiffs' Motion for Final Approval of Class and Collective Action Settlement. (Doc. # 1205.) It is FURTHER ORDERED that:

         1. The Court finally approves the class and collective action settlement. This Court also finally certifies the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) classes that were conditionally certified in this action. See (Doc. ## 525, 539, 569.)

         2. Any capitalized term that is not defined in this Order shall have the meaning provided in the Settlement Agreement.

         3. The Court confirms that it has jurisdiction over this matter and the parties to it.

         4. This Court approves the terms of the Settlement Agreement, and the Plan of Allocation, the material terms of which include, but are not limited to:

a. Class Counsel will establish a Qualified Settlement Fund (“QSF”);
b. Defendants will pay their respective shares of the settlement amount, which totals $65, 500, 000, into the QSF;
c. Within thirty (30) days after the Effective Date, and going forward, Defendants (and their agents, where applicable) will provide a statement to host families and au pairs to the effect that the weekly au pair stipend is a minimum payment requirement and host families and au pairs are free to agree to compensation higher than the legally applicable minimum.
d. From the QSF, Class Counsel will receive attorneys' fees of $22, 925, 000, representing 35% of the QSF;[1] each of the eleven class representatives will receive a service award of $5, 000; each of the FLSA deponents will receive a service award of $1, 000 (unless they are a class representative); and each FLSA opt-in plaintiff will receive $100 (unless they were deposed). The awards to class representatives, FLSA deponents, and FLSA opt-ins shall be in addition to any funds they receive as members of the Rule 23 Class Action;
e. Class Counsel's litigation expenses, as well as Expenses for administration of the settlement and sending of notice pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1715 will be deducted from the QSF;
f. $536 shall be taxed from the QSF in favor of the United States and payable into the Court to repay the filing and service costs the Court previously waived;
g. The remainder of the QSF will be distributed to Class Members, as detailed in the ...

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