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`Julian Burns King (Bar No. 298617)
`julian@kingsiegel.com
`Elliot J. Siegel (Bar No. 286798)
`elliot@kingsiegel.com
`KING & SIEGEL LLP
`724 S. Spring Street, Suite 201
`Los Angeles, California 90014
`Telephone: (213) 419-5101
`Facsimile: (213) 465-4803
`
`Daniel Hutchinson (Bar No. 239458)
`dhutchinson@lchb.com
`Lin Y. Chan (Bar No. 255027)
`lchan@lchb.com
`LIEFF CABRASER HEIMANN &
` BERNSTEIN LLP
`275 Battery Street, 29th Floor
`San Francisco, California 94111
`Telephone: (415) 956-1000
`Facsimile:
`(415) 956-1008
`
`Counsel for Plaintiffs and the Proposed Class
`
`
`UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
`FOR THE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
`
`Marcie Le and Karen Dao, individually
`and on behalf of all others similarly
`situated,
`
`Plaintiffs,
`
`v.
`Walgreen Co., an Illinois corporation;
`Walgreen Pharmacy Services Midwest,
`LLC, an Illinois limited liability
`company; and Walgreens Boots
`Alliance, a Delaware corporation,
`Defendants.
`
`
`
`
`
`
`Case No. 8:18-cv-01548
`DECLARATION OF ELLIOT J.
`SIEGEL IN SUPPORT OF
`PLAINTIFFS’ MOTION TO
`DIRECT NOTICE TO THE CLASS
`Hon. David O. Carter
`Hearing Date: April 12, 2021
`Hearing Time:
`8:30 a.m.
`
`
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`DECLARATION OF ELLIOT J. SIEGEL
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`I, Elliot J. Siegel, declare as follows:
`1.
`I am a founding and managing shareholder in the firm of King &
`Siegel LLP, attorney of record (“Class Counsel” or “Plaintiffs’ Counsel”) for
`Plaintiffs Marcie Le and Karen Dao (“Plaintiffs” or “Class Representatives”) and
`the proposed Settlement Class (the “Class”) in the above-captioned matter. I have
`been one of the lawyers primarily responsible for the prosecution of Plaintiffs’
`claims on behalf of the proposed Class.
`2.
`I am admitted to practice before this Court and am a member in good
`standing of the bar of the State of California; the United States District Court for
`the Central, Northern, and Eastern Districts of California; and the U.S. Court of
`Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
`3.
`I respectfully submit this declaration in support of Plaintiffs’
`Unopposed Motion to Direct Notice to the Class. I have personal knowledge of the
`facts set forth in this declaration and if called upon to testify, could and would
`testify competently thereto.
`Plaintiffs’ Counsel’s Academic and Professional Background
`4.
`Throughout my career, I have gained significant experience regarding
`the obligations and burdens of representing California workers in wage-and-hour
`litigation. This knowledge has allowed me and my firm, King & Siegel LLP, to
`successfully represent plaintiffs in multiple litigations, including several class
`actions, in the past years.
`5.
`I received a B.A. from University of California, Los Angeles in 2007,
`while graduating summa cum laude. In 2012, I received my J.D. from New York
`University School of Law in New York, New York and graduated with cum laude
`honors. I became a member of the Bar of the State of California in June 2012 and
`first practiced with the firm of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP, an
`AmLaw 100 firm, for approximately three years. After practicing at Quinn
`
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`Emanuel, I worked as an associate in the litigation department at Elkins Kalt
`Weintraub Reuben Gartside LLP, a boutique full-service law firm.
`6.
`At my prior firms, my practice covered a wide range of matters
`running from high-value commercial litigation, to patent matters (including the
`Apple v. Samsung litigation), to class actions (including a wage-and-hour class
`action against Barnes & Noble). I worked on complex civil litigation matters
`including United States ex rel. Bilotta v. Novartis Pharm. Corp., No. 11-civ-0071
`(PGG) (S.D.N.Y. 2011) (False Claims Act case relating to alleged kickbacks); In re
`Countrywide Financial Corporation Mortgage-Backed Securities Litig., Case Nos.
`2:11-ml-02265-MRP and 2:11-cv-10549-MRP (C.D. Cal. 2011) (fraud and
`securities case alleging false representations regarding RMBS); In re RFC and
`RESCAP Liquidating Trust Litig., No. 13-3451 (D. Minn. 2013) (breach of contract
`case involving RMBS); Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. v. Cannery Casino
`Resorts LLC, No. 1:14-cv-08571 (S.D.N.Y. 2014) (breach of contract case
`involving $465 million casino purchase); Apple Inc. v. Samsung Elecs. Co., Ltd.,
`No. 11-civ-1846 (N.D. Cal. 2011) (patent case involving smart phones); and HCT
`Group Holdings, Ltd., et al. v. Nicholas Gardner, et al., No. BC645615 (Los
`Angeles Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2017) (fraud and breach of fiduciary duty case against
`former executive).
`7.
`At both Quinn Emanuel and Elkins Kalt, I played a significant role in
`the employment law and class action matters that I was staffed on and received an
`array of experience, including drafting demurrers and motions to dismiss, drafting
`and responding to discovery, drafting and opposing discovery-related motions,
`arguing discovery-related motions, interviewing and deposing class members and
`obtaining declarations in connection with class certification motions, drafting
`mediation briefs, and opposing a writ of prejudgment attachment against a highly
`compensated employee by a former employer. I also supervised the work of more
`junior attorneys and paralegals.
`
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`8.
`Throughout my career, I have gained significant experience regarding
`the obligations and burdens of representing a class. This knowledge has allowed me
`and my firm, King & Siegel LLP, to successfully represent employees in class
`actions. Our practice is devoted to representing employees in individual and class
`action litigation in California State and federal courts, as well as in arbitration
`hearings. Though our firm was only founded in 2018, we have been appointed class
`counsel in multiple wage-and-hour class actions, including Martinez v. Arvato
`Digital Servs., LLC, No. CIVDS1823989 (San Bernardino Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2018)
`(final approval granted March 2, 2020); Quintero v. Miller Milling Company, LLC,
`No. 2:19-cv-07459 DMG (JCx) (C.D. Cal. 2019) (final approval granted July 31,
`2020); Ayala, et al. v. Four Seasons Heating & Cooling, Inc., et al., No. 56-2019-
`00529287-CU-OE-VTA (Ventura Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2018) (final approval granted on
`September 3, 2020); Martin, et al., v. Break the Floor Productions, Case No. 37-
`2019-00029711-CU-OE-CTL, (San Diego Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2019) (final approval
`granted October 23, 2020); Talkington v. Sanrose Home Health, Case No.
`RIC1902475 (Riverside Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2019) (final approval granted December 7,
`2020); Lachman, et al. v. Berlitz Languages, Inc., et al., Case No. 19STCV01533
`(Los Angeles Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2019) (preliminary approval granted August 2020);
`and Shaquille Oliver, et al. v. The J. Paul Getty Trust, Case No. 19STCV40123
`(Los Angeles Ctny. Sup. Ct. 2019) (final approval granted October 22, 2020). We
`are also currently prosecuting claims on behalf of numerous putative class members
`in multiple pending class actions, including: Awwad, et al. v. Splitsville, Case No.
`30-2018-01026248-CU-OE-CXC (Orange Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2018) (wage-and-hour
`case relating to failure to authorize and permit off-duty rest periods); Torres v. D/T
`Carson, Case No. RIC1821431 (Riverside Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2018) (wage-and-hour
`case relating to failure to authorize and permit off-duty, off-premises rest periods);
`Cohen v. Living Spaces Furniture LLC, Case No. 30-2020-01140662-CU-OE-CXC
`(Orange Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2020) (wage-and-hour relating to failure to provide suitable
`
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`seating and compliant rest periods); Leon v. Matrix Environmental Inc., Case No.
`21STCV01416 (Los Angeles Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2021) (wage-and-hour case relating to
`unpaid wages and failure to authorize and permit off-duty, off-premises rest
`periods); and Romero v. Retrofitting360, Inc, Case No. 56-2020-00546674 (Ventura
`Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2020) (wage-and-hour case relating to failure to authorize and permit
`off-duty, off-premises rest periods); and this case, in which our firm filed a
`contested motion for class certification.
`9. My firm has received a variety of professional awards and honors and
`I am active in the plaintiffs’ bar and other community organizations. In each year
`from 2018 to 2020, I was named a Southern California Super Lawyers Rising Star.
`10.
`In addition to myself, the attorneys at my law firm who seek to be
`appointed Class Counsel also have significant experience in employment litigation,
`wage-and-hour class actions, and other complex litigation.
`11. My partner, Julian Burns King has also expended a substantial amount
`of time on the Le case. Prior to involvement by our co-counsel, Mr. Siegel and I
`investigated Plaintiffs’ claims, researched applicable law and regulations involving
`pharmacists, determined the appropriate defendants, filed PAGA notices, drafted
`filings and discovery, and identified an appropriate class representative for the meal
`period claims. After co-counsel joined this litigation, we continued to play a co-lead
`role in all case matters
`12. Ms. King is a 2012 cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School, where
`she was an editor and a member of the submissions committee on the Harvard
`Journal of Law & Gender and an editor of the Harvard International Law Journal.
`After graduating from law school, she spent five years as an associate at Paul,
`Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP (2012 to 2013); Quinn Emanuel
`Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP (2013 to 2015); and Bird Marella Boxer Wolpert Nessim
`Drooks Lincenberg & Rhow, PC (2015 to 2017), before starting her own practice at
`King & Siegel LLP.
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`13. At her prior firms, Ms. King worked on a variety of class actions on
`both the plaintiff and defense side, including Precht v. Kia Motors America, Inc.,
`No. 8:14-cv-01148-DOC-MAN (C.D. Cal. 2014) (consumer class action alleging
`violations of CLRA relating to allegedly defective brake switches); In re Hyundai
`Fuel Economy Litig., No. 2:13-ml-02424-GW-FFM (C.D. Cal. 2013) (consumer
`class action alleging violations of CLRA and other consumer protection laws
`relating to allegedly misleading fuel economy advertising); In re Polyurethane
`Foam Antitrust Litig., No. 1:10-md-02196 (N.D. Oh. 2010) (antitrust class action
`alleging horizontal price-fixing in violation of the Sherman Act); Mendoza v.
`Hyundai Motor Company, Ltd., No. 5:15-cv-01685-BLF (N.D. Cal. 2015)
`(consumer class action alleging violations of CLRA and other consumer protection
`laws relating to alleged engine defects in certain models of Hyundai vehicles); and
`Brady, et al. v. Air Line Pilots Association, No. 02-2917 (JEI) (D.N.J. 2002) (labor
`law class action alleging breach of duty of fair representation).
`14. Ms. King has also worked on complex, high-stakes civil and criminal
`matters including In re Countrywide Financial Corporation Mortgage-Backed
`Securities Litig., Case Nos. 2:11-ml-02265-MRP and 2:11-cv-10549-MRP (C.D.
`Cal. 2011) (fraud and securities case alleging false representations regarding
`residential mortgage-backed securities (“RMBS”)); Asian Am. Entertainment
`Corp., Ltd. v. Las Vegas Sands Corp., et. al., No. 2:14-cv-01124-RFB-GWF (D.
`Nev. 2014) (intellectual property case involving failed joint venture to develop a
`casino in Macao); Westlake Services LLC v. Credit Acceptance Corporation, No.
`2:15-cv-07490 (C.D. Cal. 2015) (antitrust case alleging anticompetitive conduct in
`market for certain used vehicles); People v. Plains All American Pipeline LP, No.
`1495091 (Santa Barbara Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2016) (criminal case arising from 2015
`Refugio oil spill); United States v. Agility Pub. Warehousing Co. KSC, No. 1:05-
`CV-2968-TWT (N.D. Ga. 2005) (False Claims Act case involving contracts for
`provisions to troops in the Middle East); and Dadey, et al. v. City of Costa Mesa,
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`No. 30-2016-00832585-CU-WM-CJC (Orange Cnty. Sup. Ct. 2016) (civil rights
`case on behalf of low-income long-term residents of extended-stay motel in Costa
`Mesa).
`15. During her employment at Paul Weiss, Quinn Emanuel, and Bird
`Marella, Ms. King played a significant role on the employment law and class action
`matters that she was staffed on and received an array of experience, including
`drafting demurrers and motions to dismiss, removing actions from state court to
`federal court, drafting and responding to discovery, drafting and opposing
`discovery-related motions, arguing discovery-related motions, interviewing and
`deposing putative class members and obtaining declarations in connection with
`class certification and decertification motions, drafting and opposing motions for
`class certification, conducting exposure analysis to determine the strength of the
`claims and the likelihood of prevailing on class certification or the merits, drafting
`mediation briefs, deposing plaintiffs, defendants, and lay witnesses, and defending
`depositions of corporate witnesses. She also supervised the work of more junior
`attorneys.
`16. Ms. King has been recognized for her pro bono work by the State Bar
`of California and the Western Center for Law and Poverty. From 2017 to the
`present, she has been a board member for the Los Angeles Center for Community
`Law and Action. She is also an active member of the California Employment
`Lawyers’ Association; Consumer Attorneys of California; Consumer Attorneys
`Association of Los Angeles; and the Women’s Law Association of Los Angeles.
`17. Ms. King and I have been named “Rising Stars” by Super Lawyers
`magazine in each year from 2018 to the present. This is an honor awarded to no
`more than two and a half percent of attorneys under the age of 40 in California.
`18.
`I have no knowledge of the existence of any conflicting interests
`between my firm and any of its attorneys, on the one hand, and Plaintiffs or any
`other Class Member, on the other. Other than the Settlement Agreement, no
`
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`agreements were made in connection with any settlement proposal in this case.
`There are no “side agreements” between Plaintiff, Class Counsel, and/or any party
`affiliated with Defendant. Neither Plaintiff nor Class Counsel will receive any
`payments relating to this case, other than those approved by this Court as part of
`this Settlement.
`Procedural History
`19. On July 27, 2018, Marcie Le filed this action in the Superior Court of
`California, Orange County. Defendants answered the Complaint and removed the
`case to this Court on August 30, 2018. On April 9, 2019, Plaintiffs filed their First
`Amended Complaint (“FAC”). The FAC added Karen Dao as an additional plaintiff
`and asserted six claims on behalf of the putative class for violations of various
`provisions of the California Labor Code; the California Private Attorney Generals
`Act (“PAGA”), Labor Code § 2698 et seq.; and California’s Unfair Competition
`Law (“UCL”), Business & Professions Code § 17200 et seq. Plaintiffs alleged their
`class claims individually and on behalf of all current and former hourly, non-
`exempt pharmacy interns, pharmacy intern graduates, pharmacists, staff
`pharmacists, multi-location pharmacists (both assigned and unassigned), and/or
`pharmacy managers who worked for Walgreens in California at any time from July
`27, 2014 through the present. The FAC also asserted three claims against
`Walgreens on behalf of plaintiff Marcie Le. Walgreens answered the FAC on April
`23, 2019.
`20. On February 13, 2020, after extensive written and oral discovery,
`Plaintiffs moved for certification of a class comprised of “all persons who are
`and/or were employed as non-exempt pharmacists by Walgreens in any Walgreens’
`California retail store or express pharmacy between July 27, 2014 and the date of
`trial.” On March 12, 2020, Walgreens opposed the motion. Walgreens argued, inter
`alia, that Plaintiffs’ claims were not typical of the putative class given their
`positions and other circumstances of their employment; Plaintiffs’ interpretation of
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`California law governing rest breaks was incorrect; and individual pharmacies’
`practices and individual pharmacists’ interpretations of Walgreens’ policies
`predominated over common issues.
`21. On April 27, 2020, the Court denied Plaintiffs’ motion for class
`certification. In so doing, the Court held that Plaintiffs satisfied Rule 23’s
`numerosity, typicality, adequacy, and commonality requirements. With respect to
`predominance, however, the Court concluded that common issues did not
`predominate because although Walgreens’ policies applied class-wide, Plaintiffs
`had not adduced sufficient evidence showing that the policies themselves—as
`opposed to, for example, individual pharmacies’ applications of those policies—
`caused pharmacists to miss rest breaks in violation of California law.
`22. Plaintiffs moved for reconsideration on May 11, 2020. The Court
`denied the motion on June 5, 2020.
`23. On June 22, 2020, Plaintiffs filed a Petition for Permission to Appeal
`pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(f). The Ninth Circuit granted the
`Petition on July 22, 2020. On October 26, 2020, Plaintiffs filed their opening brief
`on appeal, as well as nine volumes of excerpts of record.
`24. However, before Walgreens’ brief in opposition was due, on
`December 14, 2020 the parties reached a class settlement pursuant to the mediator’s
`proposal discussed below.
`The Parties Engaged in Arms-Length Mediation Efforts Over A Multi-Year
`Period
`25. The Parties scheduled a mediation with mediator Lynn Frank, a well-
`known wage-and-hour class action mediator, to take place on November 19, 2019.
`The Parties engaged in both informal and formal discovery in advance of—and
`subsequent to—the mediation. Such information included an anonymized class list
`stating each Class Member’s rate of pay, classification, and start and end dates of
`employment, and over 300,000 pages of documents, including, payroll, timecard,
`
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`employment, and medical records for Plaintiffs; company policies; training
`materials; internal investigation files; pharmacy locations; payrate spreadsheets;
`business planning and strategy documents; case filings from related litigation;
`Storewalk Summaries; job descriptions; competency and performance goals
`documents; reports on missed meal premiums; employee complaint hotline reports;
`custodial e-mails regarding meal and rest breaks, pharmacist job duties, and
`performance guidelines; meeting agendas; and others. Plaintiffs also took eight
`depositions, five of which were Fed. R. Civ. P. 30(b)(6) depositions.
`26. Counsel reviewed the information provided by Defendants in advance
`of mediation. Counsel further retained the services of experts. Two of these experts,
`Dr. Jon Krosnick and Dr. David Breshears, submitted expert reports in support of
`Plaintiffs’ motion for class certification. A third expert, Jarret Gorlick, analyzed the
`vast amount of time and pay rate data provided by Defendants to determine, among
`other things, the number of rest periods to which putative class members were
`entitled and the maximum and realistic exposure for each class claim alleged in the
`Complaint for use at mediation.
`27. Defendants’ production in response to Plaintiffs’ Counsel’s served
`discovery was fulsome and allowed Plaintiffs’ Counsel to develop a sound
`understanding of the merits of the claims; their value; and the viability of the
`defenses asserted by Defendants.
`28. The mediation took place on November 19, 2019; the negotiations
`were non-collusive, conducted at arm’s-length, and went on well into the night. The
`parties did not resolve the matter but continued to litigate the action. On August 17,
`2020, the parties attended a second day-long mediation session with Ms. Frank, but
`failed to resolve the action at that mediation and Plaintiffs continued to litigate the
`action.
`29. Ms. Frank, however, remained engaged with the parties and, after
`numerous subsequent communications with both parties regarding potential
`
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`settlement, submitted a final mediator’s proposal-over 13 months after the parties’
`first in-person mediation based on the parties’ respective risks on appeal. On
`December 14, 2020, the parties accepted the mediator’s proposal and agreed to the
`settlement which is now before the Court.
`30. On February 22, 2021, the Parties fully executed the Settlement
`Agreement before the Court for preliminary approval.
`31. The comprehensive discussions between counsel at the mediation, the
`comprehensive and expansive discovery conducted in this matter, and the briefing
`submitted in support of and in opposition to Plaintiffs’ motion for certification have
`been adequate to give Plaintiffs’ Counsel a sound understanding of the merits of
`their position and to evaluate the worth of the claims of the Class. Plaintiffs’
`Counsel was able to reliably assess the merits of the respective Parties’ positions
`and to compromise the issues on a fair and equitable basis. Plaintiffs’ Counsel
`believes that the Settlement set forth below confers substantial benefits upon the
`members of the Class. Based on their own independent investigation and
`evaluation, Plaintiffs’ Counsel has determined that the settlement terms and
`conditions set forth below are in the best interests of Plaintiff and the members of
`the Settlement Class.
`32. With a monetary component of $6,800,000, the Settlement confers
`substantial benefits upon the approximately 4,629 Class Members, with a per-Class
`Member average net settlement value of approximately $3,808,333.33, with an
`estimated average payment of $822.71. Based on thorough examination and
`investigation of the facts and law relating to Plaintiffs’ claims on behalf of the
`Settlement Class, including the voluminous discovery exchanged and multiple
`depositions taken, as well as the rulings made by this Court, Plaintiffs’ Counsel
`believe the Settlement is in the best interest of the Class. Our investigation
`informed us about the strengths and weaknesses of Plaintiffs’ claims, as well as
`
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`DECLARATION OF ELLIOT J. SIEGEL
`CASE NO. 8:18-CV-01548
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`

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`Defendants’ defenses, and allowed us to conduct an informed, fair, and objective
`evaluation of the value and risks of continued litigation.
`The Class Representative Service Awards Are Reasonable
`33. Plaintiffs intend to seek a $10,000 Service Award in recognition of,
`and to compensate Ms. Le and Ms. Dao for, their service and efforts in prosecuting
`the case on behalf of the Class, subject to approval by the Court, in addition to
`whatever payment he is otherwise entitled to receive as a Class Member.
`34. These awards are intended to recognize and compensate them for their
`commitment to, and active participation in, this litigation. The service awards are
`not conditioned on approval of the Settlement.
`35. The proposed Service Awards are reasonable compensation given the
`time and effort that Ms. Le and Ms. Dao devoted to this case; the valuable
`assistance they provided to Class Counsel; and the fact that they entered into a
`general release of claims that is broader than the release by the Class.
`36. Plaintiffs provided invaluable assistance to Class Counsel and the
`Class in this case, including providing factual background for mediation and the
`Class Complaint; reviewing the relevant documents, and Complaint; participating
`in phone calls with Class Counsel to discuss litigation and settlement strategy;
`participating in mediation; sitting for depositions, and reviewing the settlement
`documents. Plaintiffs agreed to participate in this case with no guarantee of
`personal benefit.
`37. Further, Plaintiffs agreed to undertake the financial risk of serving as
`Class Representatives and exposed themselves to the risk of negative publicity by
`anyone who opposed this case. Moreover, the requested $10,000 Service Award
`within or less than the range of incentive payments typically awarded to
`representatives in similar class actions. See e.g., Bond v. Ferguson Enterprises, Inc.,
`No. 1:09–cv–1662 OWW MJS, 2011 WL 2648879 (E.D. Cal. June 30, 2011)
`(approving $11,250 service award to each of the two class representatives in a
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`DECLARATION OF ELLIOT J. SIEGEL
`CASE NO. 8:18-CV-01548
`
`
`

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`trucker meal break class action); Ross v. US Bank National Association, No. C 07-
`02951 SI, 2010 WL 3833922, at *2 (N.D. Cal. Sept. 29, 2010) (approving $20,000
`enhancement award to Class Representative in California wage-and-hour class
`action settlement); Vasquez v. Coast Valley Roofing, Inc., 266 F.R.D. 482, 493
`(E.D. Cal. 2010) (approving service awards in the amount of $10,000 each from a
`$300,000 settlement fund in a wage/hour class action); West v. Circle K Stores,
`Inc., NO. CIV. S-04-0438 WBS GGH, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 76558, at *28 (E.D.
`Cal. Oct. 19, 2006) (“the court finds Plaintiff’ enhancement payments of $ 15,000
`each to be reasonable.”); Glass v. UBS Fin. Servs., No. C-06-4068 MMC, 2007
`U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8476, at *52 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 26, 2007) (finding “requested
`payment of $ 25,000 to each of the named Plaintiff is appropriate” in wage and
`hour settlement); Louie v. Kaiser Found. Health Plan, Inc., CASE NO. 08cv0795
`IEG RBB, 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78314, at *18 (S.D. Cal. Oct. 6, 2008)
`(approving “$25,000 incentive award for each Class Representative” in wage an
`hour settlement); Garner v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., No. CV 08 1365 CW
`(EMC), 2010 WL 1687832, at *17 n.8 (N.D. Cal. Apr. 22, 2010) (“Numerous
`courts in the Ninth Circuit and elsewhere have approved incentive awards of
`$20,000 or more where, as here, the class representative has demonstrated a strong
`commitment to the class.”).
`38. Ms. Le and Ms. Dao intend to provide a signed declaration in support
`of a service award prior to the final approval hearing for this action.
`The Court Should Appoint CPT as Administrator
`39. The parties propose that the Court appoint CPT Group, Inc. (“CPT
`Group”) to serve as the Settlement Administrator. CPT Group is experienced in
`administering class action settlements, having administered thousands of class
`actions, and is qualified to administer this Settlement
`40. CPT agreed to a hard cap of $30,000 on settlement notice and
`administration costs. The amounts paid from the Gross Settlement Fund therefore
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`DECLARATION OF ELLIOT J. SIEGEL
`CASE NO. 8:18-CV-01548
`
`
`

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`will not exceed $30,000 unless there is a significant change in the scope of work
`being performed.
`41.
`I have previously engaged CPT to serve as the settlement
`administration in several other wage-and-hour class settlements and found them to
`be reliable and efficient class administrators.
`The Attorneys’ Fees Requests is Reasonable
`42. The Settlement calls for payment of up to one-third the gross
`settlement amount, or $2,266,666.44, in attorneys’ fees. This request is fair,
`reasonable, and adequate to compensate Plaintiffs’ Counsel for the substantial work
`they have put into this case and the risk they assumed by taking it in the first place.
`This is consistent with the contingency-fee agreement entered into by Plaintiffs. I
`have practiced law in Southern California, including work on many class actions on
`both the defense and plaintiff side, and am familiar with the regular acceptable rate
`for contingency representation in wage-and-hour class actions, which is generally
`around one-third of the common fund recovery.
`43. The attorneys’ fees sought are intended to reimburse Plaintiffs’
`Counsel for all uncompensated work they have already done and for the work they
`will continue to do in carrying out and overseeing the notice process,
`communicating with Class Members regarding the proposed Settlement, and
`administering the Settlement if it is preliminarily approved.
`44. Plaintiffs’ Counsel took this case on a contingency basis against a
`business represented by a reputable defense firm. We must pay careful attention to
`the economics involved when we bring contingency cases since we bear the risk
`that our clients’ claims ultimately lose and we are paid nothing for our work and
`out-of-pocket expenditures. This risk is even greater when a firm is new, as ours is.
`Because of this, when we take on one matter, we must turn down other matters.
`When we became involved in this case, we realized the time commitment it would
`take and in fact turned down matters due to our caseload. In sum, this case took up
`
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`DECLARATION OF ELLIOT J. SIEGEL
`CASE NO. 8:18-CV-01548
`
`
`

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`a significant portion of our time and attention through its pendency. We have spent
`approximately 500 hours on this case to date, over a period of several years, and
`will spend more time on it through the approval and notice process, including
`speaking with Class Members, staying updated with the Settlement Administrator,
`preparing final approval papers, and preparing for the preliminary and final
`approval hearings. This also does not taken into account the time spent by our co-
`counsel, Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein, LLP (“LCHB”), who cooperatively
`and effec

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