United States District Court, D. Columbia.
For RANDOLFO MARROQUIN, JUAN JOSE GUILLEN MORALES, EMILIO ORTEGA MARROQUIN, Plaintiffs: Michael K. Amster, ZIPIN, AMSTER & GREENBERG, LLC, Silver Spring, MD.
For COUNTRY CHOICE, LLC, MERHAN HAJ-MOMENIAN, also known as H. MOMENIAN, also known as HAJ H. M., HOUSHANG H. MOMENIAN, Defendants: Ari Micha Wilkenfeld, LEAD ATTORNEY, THE WILKENFELD LAW GROUP, Washington, DC; Mark Leonard Hessel, LEAD ATTORNEY, Wheaton, MD.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
DEBORAH A. ROBINSON, United States Magistrate Judge.
Plaintiffs Randolfo Marroquin, Juan Jose Guillen Morales, and Emilio Ortega Marroquin bring this action against Defendants Country Choice, LLC, Merhan Haj-Momenian, and Houshang Momenian, alleging violations of the minimum wage and overtime compensation requirements of the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (" FLSA" ) and the District of Columbia Minimum Wage Act Revision Act (" DCMWA" ). First Amended Complaint (" Complaint" ) (Document No. 24). With the consent of the parties, this case was assigned to the undersigned United States Magistrate Judge for all purposes. Order Referring Case to Magistrate Judge for All Purposes (Document No. 16); Notice, Consent, and Reference of a Civil Action to a Magistrate Judge (Document No. 18). Pending for determination is Plaintiffs' Motion for Default Judgment of Amount Certain (Document No. 28). Upon consideration of the motion, the exhibits submitted in support thereof, and the entire record herein, the court will grant Plaintiffs' motion and enter default judgment against Defendants.
Plaintiffs are former employees of Defendant Country Choice, LLC, a corporation operating " continuously in the District of Columbia and surrounding states acting as a meat wholesaler and grocery store." Complaint ¶ ¶ 3, 4. Defendant Haj-Momenian was the general manager of Defendant Country Choice, and in that capacity, supervised Plaintiffs and held authority with respect to the terms of their employment. Id. ¶ 11. Defendant Houshang Momenian was the owner and manager of Defendant Country Choice during Plaintiffs' employment, and similarly supervised Plaintiffs. Id. ¶ 12. Plaintiffs allege that they were " employees," and that Defendants were their " employer," as defined by the FLSA and the DCMWA. Id. ¶ ¶ 20-21, 28, 35, 38.
Plaintiffs allege that during the course of their employment, they worked approximately 60 hours per week and received set weekly rates " irrespective of the number of hours that [they] actually worked." Id. ¶ ¶ 13-15. From approximately September 1, 2010 until January 15, 2013, Plaintiff Randolfo Marroquin worked as a " general laborer, butcher, and delivery driver" for nine and one-half to ten hours per day, six days a week. Id. ¶ 13. Defendants paid him $360 per week from September 1, 2010 until December 1, 2010; from December 1, 2010 to July 1, 2011, Defendants paid him $400 per week; from July 1, 2011 to June 20, 2012, Defendants paid him $450 per week; and from June 20, 2012 to January 15, 2013, Defendants paid him
$500 per week. Id. Plaintiff Juan Jose Guillen Morales was employed by Defendants as a " general laborer and butcher from roughly September 12, 2012 to March 20, 2013." Id. ¶ 14. Plaintiff Morales also worked nine and one-half to ten hours per day, six days a week. Id. Defendants initially paid him $380 per week; starting in November 12, 2012, they paid him $400 per week. Id. Plaintiff Emilio Ortega Marroquin was employed by Defendants as a " general laborer and butcher from roughly August 2006 to May 4, 2013," and also worked for nine and one-half to ten hours per day, six days a week. Id. ¶ 15. Defendants paid him $400 per week. Id.
Plaintiffs allege that Defendant Haj-Momenian and Defendant Houshang Momenian " controlled" their work schedules and " determined the rate and method of [their] pay." Id. ¶ ¶ 13-15. Plaintiffs further allege that Defendants " willful[ly] and intentional[ly]" failed to pay Plaintiffs the minimum wage and overtime compensation required by D.C. and federal law. Id. ¶ ¶ 13-15, 17. Plaintiffs assert the following claims against Defendants: violation of the overtime requirement of the FLSA (Count I); violation of the minimum wage requirement of the FLSA (Count II); violation of the overtime requirement of the DCMWA (Count III); and violation of the minimum wage requirement of the DCMWA (Count IV).
Rule 55 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that " [w]hen a party against whom a judgment for affirmative relief is sought has failed to plead or otherwise defend . . . the clerk must enter the party's default." Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(a). After the clerk's entry of default, the party may then move for entry of default judgment. Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(b). " The determination of whether default judgment is appropriate is committed to the sound discretion of the trial court." ITPE Pension Fund v. Stronghold Sec., LLC, No. 13-0025, 23 F.Supp.3d 1, 2014 WL 702580, at *1 (D.D.C. Feb. 25, 2014) (citations omitted) (quoting another source) (internal quotation marks omitted). The defendant " must be considered a totally unresponsive party and its default plainly wilful, reflected by its failure to respond to the summons and complaint, the entry of default, or the motion for default judgment." Id. (citations omitted) (quoting another source) (internal quotation marks omitted). " ...