United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER APPROVING MINOR'S COMPROMISE
WILLIAM B. SHUBB UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
three minor children and their mother Aleshna Kumari, filed
this lawsuit against the County of Sacramento, as well as
against Jesse Gomez-Coates, Janelle Gonzalez, and Leona
Williams, who are employed by Sacramento County Child
Protective Services. Plaintiffs allege violations of their
constitutional rights as well as the California Government
Code sections pertaining to breach of mandatory duty. Hardip
Singh was appointed as guardian ad litem for A.S., A.K., and
A.K.M.. (Docket No. 15.) Presently before the court is Hardip
Singh's Petition for Approval of Minor's Compromise.
(Docket No. 33.) The court held a hearing on this petition on
September 9, 2019.
the Eastern District of California's Local Rules, the
court must approve the settlement of the claims of a minor.
E.D. Cal. L.R. 202(b). The party moving for approval of the
settlement must provide the court “information as may
be required to enable the [c]ourt to determine the fairness
of the settlement or compromise[.]” Id. at
L.R. 202(b)(2); see also Robidoux v. Rosengren, 638
F.3d 1177, 1179 (9th Cir. 2011) (stating that district courts
have a duty “to safeguard the interests of minor
plaintiffs” that requires them to “determine
whether the net amount distributed to each minor plaintiff in
the proposed settlement is fair and reasonable[.]”).
Robidoux, the Ninth Circuit specifically instructed district
courts to “limit the scope of their review to the
question whether the net amount distributed to each minor
plaintiff in the settlement is fair and reasonable, in light
of the facts of the case, the minor's specific claim, and
recovery in similar cases.” 638 F.3d at 1181-82.
Although the Robidoux court expressly limited its holding to
a minor's federal claims, 638 F.3d at 1179 n.2, district
courts have also applied this rule in the context of a
minor's state law claims. See, e.g., Frary v. County
of Marin, No. 12-cv-3928-MEJ, 2015 WL 575818, at *2
(N.D. Cal. Feb. 10, 2015).
the proposed settlement, reached through private mediation,
the plaintiffs will receive $15, 000. That amount will be
allocated between the parties as follows:
A.K. $2, 500
A.K.M. $5, 000
A.S. $2, 500
Aleshna Kumari $5, 000
(Choudhary Decl. ¶ 4 (Docket No. 33-2).) From this sum,
$1, 405.83 will be deducted for attorneys' costs. (Pet.
For Approval of Minor's Compromise ¶ 14.) This
amount will be allocated equally across all four plaintiffs.
in attorneys' fees will also be deducted from the
settlement and allocated as follows:
A.K. $625 in attorneys' fees
A.K.M. $1, 250 in attorneys' ...