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Rubi v. Dynamic Change Inc.

United States District Court, D. Oregon

February 20, 2019

ARTURO VILLEGAS RUBI, Plaintiff,
v.
DYNAMIC CHANGE INC., a Washington business corporation and TREVOR LESKE, an individual, Defendants.

          Corinna Spencer-Scheurich Kate Suisman NORTHWEST WORKERS' JUSTICE PROJECT D. Michael Dale AW OFFICES OF D. MICHAEL DALE Attorneys for Plaintiff

          OPINION & ORDER

          MARCO A. HERNANDEZ, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Plaintiff Arturo Villegas Rubi brings this wage-related action against Defendants Dynamic Change Inc. (“Dynamic Change”) and Trevor Leske, an individual who allegedly owns Dynamic Change. Plaintiff brings claims under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C. § 201, as well as Oregon's[1] wage and hour statutes. Plaintiff alleges that Defendants failed to pay Plaintiff the agreed-upon wage for all the work he performed for Defendants. Plaintiff also brings a common law breach of contract claim.

         Plaintiff filed a motion for default judgment against both Defendants. The court grants the motion and awards a judgment of $13, 191.94.

         PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff filed this case on September 28, 2017 and Defendants failed to answer. On February 5, 2018, this Court entered an order of default as to Mr. Leske. Feb. 5, 2018 Op., ECF 8. On March 5, 2018, Plaintiff amended the Complaint by removing a second corporate defendant and making minor factual alterations. First Am. Compl., ECF 9. On October 26, 2018, this Court entered an order of default as to Dynamic Change. Oct. 26, 2018 Op., ECF 18.

         Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) superseded the original complaint. See Lacey v. Maricopa Cty., 693 F.3d 896, 925 (9th Cir. 2012) (explaining that once a plaintiff files an amended complaint, the original pleading “no longer serves any function”). The FAC was properly served on Dynamic Change. See Oct. 26, 2018 Op. at 9. And, while it does not appear that Mr. Leske was served the FAC, “[n]o service is required on a party who is in default for failing to appear” so long as the pleading does not “assert[] a new claim for relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 5(a)(2). The Court reviewed the original Complaint and the FAC and concludes that no additional claims for relief were asserted against Mr. Leske. Thus, this Court grants Plaintiff default judgment against both Defendants based on the FAC.

         STANDARDS

         Upon entry of default, all well-pleaded factual allegations of the complaint are taken as true, except those allegations relating to the amount of damages. See Geddes v. United Fin. Grp., 559 F.2d 557, 560 (9th Cir. 1977) (“The general rule of law is that upon default the factual allegations of the complaint, except those relating to the amount of damages, will be taken as true.”); NewGen, LLC v. Safe Cig, LLC, 840 F.3d 606, 617 (9th Cir. 2016) (same).

         However, the district court's decision whether to enter a default judgment is a discretionary one. DIRECTV, Inc. v. Hoa Huynh, 503 F.3d 847, 852 (9th Cir. 2007) (citing Aldabe v. Aldabe, 616 F.2d 1089, 1092 (9th Cir. 1980)). “[D]efault judgments are ordinarily disfavored.” Eitel v. McCool, 782 F.2d 1470, 1472 (9th Cir. 1986). In exercising its discretion, the court may consider the following factors:

(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 ...

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