University of Michigan Law School
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Case Name Carranza v. Mecca Farms, Inc. IM-FL-0022
Docket / Court 9:01-cv-09013-KLR ( S.D. Fla. )
State/Territory Florida
Case Type(s) Immigration
Attorney Organization Legal Services/Legal Aid
Case Summary
On November 19, 2001, the Florida Legal Services Inc. Migrant Farmworker Justice Project filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of migrant farm workers in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, alleging violations of the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, ... read more >
On November 19, 2001, the Florida Legal Services Inc. Migrant Farmworker Justice Project filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of migrant farm workers in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, alleging violations of the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, 29 U.S.C. §§ 1801-1872, the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. §§ 201-219, and the Federal Insurance Contributions Act, 26 U.S.C. §§ 3101-3128. Plaintiffs were field workers that planted, cultivated, prepared, and harvested tomatoes and other crops in south Florida on farm operations of Mecca Farms, Inc. The workers alleged that: they were not paid minimum wage, they were denied overtime wages, employee Social Security taxes were deducted from their wages but were never paid to the government and their hours worked were incorrectly calculated. Plaintiffs sought monetary damages and class certification.

This was a companion case to the lawsuit Martinez v. Mecca Farms, Inc. [IM-FL-13] which was filed on behalf of workers in Florida tomato and chili pepper packing houses.

Following filing of the suit, the parties engaged in discovery and then filed cross-motions for summary judgment. Prior to any substantive court rulings, the case was settled.

On April 7, 2003, the District Court (Judge Kenneth L. Ryskamp) formally approved the settlement in the case, retaining jurisdiction to enforce the terms of the settlement, but otherwise dismissing and closing the case. Under the terms of the Settlement Agreement, an unlimited joint settlement fund was created to settle claims in the Luz-Carranza case and in the companion case v Martinez. Mecca Farms, Inc. [IM-FL-13]. The defendants agreed to pay the Luz-Carranza class members were to be paid $5.00 per day for field work and Martinez class members $4.00 per day worked in the tomato packing houses and $3.00 per day worked in the pepper packing houses. Defendants also agreed to file appropriate W-2 forms with the government. Attorneys fees in the amount of $200,000.00 would be paid by defendants and a $25,000 contribution would also be made to a local farm workers assistance group.

Dan Dalton - 11/12/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Immigration
Employer sanctions
Employment
Temporary foreign workers program
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Workers Protection Act, 29 U.S.C. §§ 1801-1871
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), 29 U.S.C. §§ 201-219
Defendant(s) A-Z Grading & Packing, Inc.
Mecca Farms, Inc.
Medrano Harvesting & Packing, Inc.
Plaintiff Description All migrant agricultural workers employed or jointly employed by Defendants Mecca Farms, Inc., as field workers at various points between 1997 and November 2001.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Legal Services/Legal Aid
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Damages
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2003
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing IM-FL-0013 : Martinez v. Mecca Farms, Inc. (S.D. Fla.)
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Threats to the Future of the Immigration Class Action
Washington University Journal of Law and Policy
By: Jill E. Family (Widener University School of Law)
Citation: 27 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol'y 71 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
9:01-cv-09013-KLR (S.D. Fla.) 04/08/2003
IM-FL-0022-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Damages, Declaratory Relief, Injunctive Relief, Cost of Litigation and Attorney's Fees 11/20/2001
IM-FL-0022-0001 PDF | Detail
Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiff's Motion for Order Imposing on Defendants the Costs of Service 01/31/2002
IM-FL-0022-0002 PDF | Detail
Complaint - Class Action 02/19/2002
IM-FL-0022-0003 PDF | Detail
Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification 07/01/2002
IM-FL-0022-0004 PDF | Detail
Mecca Farms, Inc. Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification 08/16/2002
IM-FL-0022-0005 PDF | Detail
Mecca Farms, Inc. Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and Incorporation Memorandum of Law in Support Thereof 10/04/2002
IM-FL-0022-0006 PDF | Detail
Plaintiffs and Defendant Mecca Farms, Inc.'s Joint Motion for Preliminary Approval of Settlement and Supporting Memorandum of Law 03/04/2003
IM-FL-0022-0007 PDF | Detail
Plaintiffs and Defendants Maria T. Sanchez and M. Sanchez & Son, Inc. Joint Motion for Preliminary Approval of Settlement and Supporting Memorandum of Law 03/13/2003
IM-FL-0022-0008 PDF | Detail
Judges Ryskamp, Kenneth L. (S.D. Fla.)
IM-FL-0022-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Caron, Cathleen Demerise (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-0001 | IM-FL-0022-0002 | IM-FL-0022-0003 | IM-FL-0022-0004 | IM-FL-0022-0007 | IM-FL-0022-0008 | IM-FL-0022-9000
Hirales, Lillian Magdaleno (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-0005 | IM-FL-0022-0007 | IM-FL-0022-0008 | IM-FL-0022-9000
Schell, Gregory Scott (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-0001 | IM-FL-0022-0002 | IM-FL-0022-0003 | IM-FL-0022-0004 | IM-FL-0022-0007 | IM-FL-0022-0008
Defendant's Lawyers Boswell, Don R. (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-0008 | IM-FL-0022-9000
Ianno, Joseph Jr. (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-0005 | IM-FL-0022-0006 | IM-FL-0022-0007 | IM-FL-0022-9000
Siegel, Steven Adam (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-9000
Smigiel, Gary G. (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-9000
Stutin, Cathy Mattson (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-9000
Wulf, Henry S. (Florida)
IM-FL-0022-0006 | IM-FL-0022-0007 | IM-FL-0022-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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