A Rochester law firm that represented Tuxedo Junction managers in a “moderately complex” Fair Labor Standards Act class action has been awarded $73,427 in fees and costs, representing about 37 percent of the $200,000 settlement.
Western District Judge Elizabeth Wolford said in a July 25 order that the firm of Thomas & Solomon devoted about 1,100 hours to the contingency case, which at its standard hourly rate would have resulted in fees of about $280,000. She approved fees of $66,660, plus $6,767 in litigation costs and $9,997 in administrative costs.
The case, Chambery v. Tuxedo Junction, 12-cv-06539, was brought on behalf of current and former managers in training and branch managers of the tuxedo and formal wear rental business. Plaintiffs in New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio contended the company had a policy of failing to pay statutorily mandated overtime. Tuxedo Junction denied the allegations in what Wolford described as a “vigorously contested case,” especially in light of Wal-Mart stores Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541 (2011), which made it class certification more difficult in employment cases.
Thomas & Solomon partners Patrick Solomon and Michael Lingle and associates Guy Talia, and Jessica Witenko represented the plaintiffs. Tuxedo Junction was represented by Patricia Gillen, a partner at Duke Holzman Photiadis & Gresens in Buffalo.