Radtke v. Caschetta, No. 15-7003 (D.C. Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Appellants received less than $6,000 in damages from their employers for unpaid overtime wages after eight years of litigation. In this appeal, appellants challenge the district court's fee award as too low, while the employers challenge it as too high. The court concluded that, while appellants’ fee petition originally was untimely, the court’s entry of an amended judgment created “[a] new period for filing” and cured that untimeliness, notwithstanding the fact that the petition was filed before entry of the new judgment. Therefore, appellants satisfied Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(d)(2)(B)’s dictates, leaving no ground on which to deny appellants’ fee petition in its entirety for lack of timeliness. On the merits, the court concluded that there is no support in the record for the district court’s finding that appellants failed to promptly provide a damages calculation that could have facilitated early settlement. This clear factual error requires remand. Additionally, because the court cannot ascertain whether or how significantly this mistaken factual finding impacted other aspects of the district court’s fee reasonability assessment, the court vacated the entire decision and remanded.