United States District Court, D. Oregon
GARY YOUNG and TIMOTHY G. GAUTHIER, Trustees who comprise the OREGON AND SOUTHWEST WASHINGTON OPINION & NECA-IBEW ELECTRICAL WORKERS AUDIT COMMITTEE, Plaintiffs,
SUNDOWN ELECTRIC COMPANY, Defendant.
Linda J. Larkin, Bennett Hartman Morris & Kaplan LLP, Portland, OR, Attorney for Plaintiffs.
OPINION AND ORDER
MARCO A. HERNNDEZ, District Judge.
Plaintiffs Gary Young and Timothy Gauthier, as trustees of the Oregon and Southwest Washington NECA-IBEW Electrical Workers Audit Committee, move for entry of default judgment  against Defendant Sundown Electric Company. Based on the following, I grant the motion in part and award attorney fees and costs. I reserve ruling on the other requested sums due to the lack of supporting documentation.
Plaintiffs bring this action under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act ("ERISA"). In claim one for violation of ERISA, as authorized under the Collective Bargaining Agreement and Trust Agreements, Plaintiffs seek $18, 205.62 in unpaid contributions for the month of March 2014, liquidated damages, and reasonable attorney fees and costs. Compl. ¶¶ 20-22. In claim two for breach of contract, Plaintiffs seek $2, 236.43 in wages withheld and sums due for the Political Action Committee, union dues, working dues, vacation funds, and Administrative Funds for the month of March 2014. Id . at ¶ 31. Additionally, Plaintiffs claim $1, 889.85 in liquidated damages, interest, and reasonable attorney fees and costs related to the ERISA violation; and the statutory 9% annual interest under ORS § 82.010 on the sums due for breach of contract. Id . at ¶¶ 21, 32.
Rule 55(a) requires the Clerk of the Court to enter an order of default if a party has failed to timely plead or otherwise defend. "[U]pon default the factual allegations of the complaint, except those relating to the amount of damages, will be taken as true." Geddes v. United Financial Group , 559 F.2d 557, 560 (9th Cir. 1977); SEC v. Wencke , 577 F.2d 619, 622 (9th Cir. 1977) (without an answer in the record, every well-pleaded allegation in the complaint is deemed admitted). As to whether to enter a default judgment, the court has discretion. DIRECTV, Inc. v. Hoa Huynh , 503 F.3d 847, 852 (9th Cir. 2007). In exercising its discretion, the court may consider
(1) the possibility of prejudice to the plaintiff, (2) the merits of plaintiff's substantive claim, (3) the sufficiency of the complaint, (4) the sum of money at stake in the action; (5) the possibility of a dispute concerning material facts; (6) whether the default was due to excusable neglect, and (7) the strong policy underlying the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure favoring decisions on the merits.
Eitel v. McCool , 782 F.2d 1470, 1471-72 (9th Cir. 1986). "[D]efault judgments are ordinarily disfavored." Id . at 1472.
This case was filed on May 1, 2014. Defendant was served on May 7, 2014. Affidavit of Service . Plaintiffs' moved for entry of default, which was entered on August 5, 2014. Clerk's Entry of Default . Before me is Plaintiffs' motion for entry of default judgment. I have considered the seven factors and find that entry of default judgment is warranted, but as explained below, I grant the motion in part with respect to the attorney fees and costs, and reserve ruling on the other requested sums due to the lack of documentation.
I. ERISA Claim
Under the ERISA claim, Plaintiffs initially sought $18, 205.62 in unpaid contributions for the month of March 2014. However, in the motion for entry of default judgment, Plaintiffs now allege $15, 418.65 in unpaid contributions, $1, 992.81 in liquidated damages, and $44.87 in interest. Larkin Decl. ¶ 6. Plaintiffs no longer seek the $15, 418.65 in unpaid contributions because Defendant paid the amount on May 8, 2014, leaving the liquidated damages and interest at issue. Id.
According to the Collective Bargaining Agreement, contributions are due on the 15th day of each month, and considered delinquent if an employer fails to pay by the 20th of every month. Id . at Ex. 2 at 11, Section 13.02. An employer who is delinquent in the payment of contributions is liable for liquidated damages. Id . at Section 13.03. Liquidated damages "shall be charged at the rate of twelve percent (12%) per year of the ...