United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania
JOHN COTTILLION, et al., on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
UNITED REFINING COMPANY, et al., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
CATHY BISSOON, District Judge.
This matter is before the Court upon the parties' submission of a joint report (Doc. 247) identifying the final composition of the certified class, the payment amounts owed to each member of that class, and any disputes remaining as to either of the foregoing. In addition, the following motions are pending: Plaintiffs' Motion to Clarify the Memorandum and Order Dated November 5, 2013 (Doc. 251); Plaintiffs' Motion to Strike (Doc. 252); Defendants' Cross-Motion for Attorneys' Fees (Doc. 254); and Defendants' Cross-Motion to Substitute Declaration (Doc. 260). For the reasons that follow, each of these motions will be denied. A final class certification order will be issued consistent with this memorandum opinion.
A. BACKGROUND AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Plaintiffs John Cottillion ("Cottillion") and Beverly Eldridge ("Eldridge") (collectively, "Plaintiffs") initiated this action on June 12, 2009, alleging, inter alia, that Defendants had violated ERISA's anti-cutback provision, § 204(g), 29 U.S.C. § 1054(g)(2). (Doc. 1). On April 8, 2013, Judge Sean J. McLaughlin issued a memorandum opinion and order granting summary judgment in favor of Plaintiffs on their anti-cutback claim. Cottillion v. United Refining Co., 2013 WL 1419705, *1 (W.D. Pa. Apr. 8, 2013). On November 5, 2013, this Court granted Plaintiffs' motion for class certification and certified the following class:
All terminated vested participants of the United Refining Company Pension Plan for Salaried Employees ("Plan"), who were employed by United Refining Company and vested under either the 1980 or 1987 version of the Plan at any time between January 1, 1987 and March 18, 2003, and their beneficiaries under the Plan.
Cottillion v. United Refining Co., 2013 WL 5936368, *10 (W.D. Pa. Nov. 5, 2013). The Court directed the parties to "meet and confer to determine the final composition of the certified class" and to identify any disputes "as to the composition of the class or the amount of restitution owed to any individual class member." Id. at *11.
On January 14, 2013, the parties' submitted a joint report outlining their stipulations and disputes concerning final class composition and restitution. (Doc. 247). Specifically, the parties indicated that they had agreed to the following stipulations:
a. The parties stipulate that the 193 individuals listed in Joint Exhibit 1 (and their beneficiaries under the Plan) are members of the certified class; and
b. The parties stipulate to the payment amounts due under the Remedies Order as of December 31, 2013, for the 25 class members that are listed in Joint Exhibit 2.
(Doc. 247 at p. 1). However, the parties could not agree as to whether the following five individuals qualified as members of the certified class: Lisa Feeny, Charles Fields, Raymond Gutshall, Gayle Munson, and Stuart Upton. Id. at 2. The parties also disagreed as to the proper restitution amounts for the following five individual class members: Gary Berti, Janice Moore, Home Morrison III, Dennis Tuttle, and Stephen Widmer. Id.
1. Motion for Clarification
"Although no Federal Rule of Civil Procedure specifically governs motions for clarification, ' these motions are generally recognized and allowed by federal courts." Barnes v. District of Columbia, 289 F.R.D. 1, 13 (D.D.C 2012). "The general purpose of a motion for clarification is to explain or clarify something ambiguous or vague, not to alter or amend." ...