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Cotter v. Lyft, Inc.

United States District Court, N.D. California

July 1, 2016

PATRICK COTTER, ALEJANDRA MACIEL, and JEFFREY KNUDTSON, on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
LYFT, INC., Defendant.

          SHANNON LISS-RIORDAN LICHTEN & LISS-RIORDAN, P.C., MATTHEW D. CARLSON LICHTEN & LISS-RIORDAN, P.C. ATTORNEYS FOR PLAINTIFFS COTTER, MACIEL, AND KNUDTSON

          ORDER GRANTING PRELIMINARY APPROVAL OF CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT

          HON. VINCE CHHABRIA UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiffs have filed a Motion for Preliminary Approval of the class action settlement reached with Defendant Lyft, Inc., a hearing on which was held on June 2, 2016. The Court has carefully considered the Settlement Agreement together with all exhibits thereto, all the filings related to the Settlement, the arguments of counsel, and the record in this case. For the reasons described below and in the Court’s June 23, 2016 Order (Dkt. No. 246), the Court hereby gives its preliminary approval of the Settlement; finds that the Settlement and Settlement Agreement are sufficiently fair, reasonable, and adequate to allow dissemination of notice of the Settlement to the Settlement Class and to hold a Fairness Hearing; orders the Class Notice be sent to the Settlement Class in accordance with the Settlement Agreement and this Order; and schedules a Fairness Hearing to determine whether the proposed Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate.

         IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:

         1. The Settlement Agreement is hereby incorporated by reference in this Order, and all terms or phrases used in this Order shall have the same meaning as in the Settlement Agreement.

         2. The Court preliminarily approves the Settlement, together with all of its Exhibits, finding that the terms of the Agreement are fair, reasonable, and adequate, and within the range of possible approval and sufficient to warrant providing notice to the Settlement Class.

         3. Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 23(a) and (b)(3), the Court certifies, for settlement purposes only, the following Settlement Class: “All Lyft Drivers who gave at least one Ride in California during the period from May 25, 2012 through the date of this Order.” 4. The Court finds, for settlement purposes only, that the Action may be maintained as a class action on behalf of the Settlement Class because:

a. Numerosity: Class Counsel estimate that more than 100, 000 individuals have potential claims and are members of the Settlement Class. This satisfies the Rule 23(a)(1) numerosity requirement.
b. Commonality: The threshold for commonality under Rule 23(a)(2) is not high and single common issue will suffice. Plaintiffs allege, among other things, that Lyft’s terms of service establish that Drivers are employees. This issue is common to the Settlement Class.
c. Typicality. Named Plaintiffs’ claims are typical of the claims of the Settlement Class Members and satisfy Rule 23(a)(3).
d. Adequacy: There are no conflicts of interest between Named Plaintiffs and Settlement Class members and Named Plaintiffs have retained competent counsel to represent the Settlement Class. Class Counsel regularly engage in complex litigation similar to the present case and have dedicated substantial resources to the prosecution of this matter. The adequacy requirement is satisfied.
e. Predominance and Superiority: There is predominance and superiority. A class action is superior to other available methods for the fair and efficient adjudication of this controversy. The common legal and factual issue listed in the preliminary approval papers predominate all over other issues. Resolution of the common question constitutes a significant part of Plaintiffs’ and Settlement Class Members’ claims.

         5. Pursuant to the stipulation submitted by the parties concurrently with the submission of the motion for preliminary approval, the Court granted leave to file the Fifth Amended Complaint in the form attached to the Settlement Agreement. Dkt. No. 252.

         6. The Court appoints as class representatives, for settlement purposes only, Named Plaintiffs Patrick Cotter, Alejandra Maciel, and Jeffrey Knudtson. The Court finds, for settlement purposes only, that the ...


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