UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
April 1, 2013
CATHERINE EVON, PLAINTIFF,
LAW OFFICES OF SIDNEY MICKELL; AND DOES 1-10, INCLUSIVE,
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kendall J. Newman United States Magistrate Judge
ORDER GRANTING JOINT MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION AND PRELIMINARY APPROVAL OF CLASS SETTLEMENT DATE: April 11, 2013 TIME: 10:00 a.m. DEPT: Courtroom 25
This case comes before the Court on the joint motion of Plaintiff Catherine Evon, on behalf of herself and the class she proposes to represent, and Defendants Law Offices of Sidney Mickell and Sidney Mickell for an order certifying a settlement class and preliminary approval of the class action Settlement Agreement.*fn1 After reviewing the joint motion, the court finds that the motion is suitable for submission upon the record and briefs on file, and resolution without oral argument, pursuant to E.D. Cal. L.R. 230(g).
Having considered the matter, the joint motion, the proposed Settlement Agreement, and the declarations of counsel, and good cause appearing,
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:
1. The April 11, 2013 hearing on the joint motion is VACATED.
2. The joint motion for class certification and preliminary approval of the class settlement (Dkt. No. 131) is GRANTED along the terms outlined in this order.
3. Pursuant to Rule 23, this case is certified as a Rule 23(b)(3) class action against Defendants Law Offices of Sidney Mickell and Sidney Mickell. The class is defined as follows:
All consumers to whom Defendants sent a debt collection letter to their place of employment, addressed to the consumer in care of their employer, from one year prior to the filing of this action on March 18, 2009 to present.
4. Catherine Evon is appointed as the class representative. Sergei Lemberg and Lara Shapiro are appointed class counsel. First Class, Inc., 5410 W. Roosevelt Rd., Suite 222, Chicago, IL 60644-1479 is appointed class administrator.
5. The Settlement Agreement is preliminarily approved.
6. The names and addresses of all class members shall be provided by Defendants to class counsel within thirty (30) days of the date of entry of this order.
7. A class notice in a substantially similar form as attached to the Settlement Agreement shall be mailed to each class member as described in the settlement agreement within forty-five (45) days of the date of entry of this order.
8. Any person falling within the definition of the Settlement Class may, upon request, be excluded from the settlement. A person who decides to opt out must send a letter so stating to the class administrator, First Class, at the address set forth in the notice, and include in the letter the person's name, address, telephone number, and reference the name of this case "Catherine Evon v. Law Offices of Sidney Mickell." The letter must be postmarked no later than thirty-five (35) days from the class notice date, and must be signed by the person to whom the notice was addressed. All persons who timely "opt out" by submitting properly completed requests for exclusion shall have no rights under the Settlement Agreement and shall not share in the benefits of the Settlement Agreement and shall not be bound by the Settlement Agreement.
9. Any settlement class member who wishes to object to all or any part of the proposed settlement must file written objections with the Court Clerk of this Court, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California and mail said objections to class counsel and defense counsel no later than ten (10) days prior to the final fairness hearing. In addition, members who wish to appear at the final fairness hearing must file a statement of their intention to do so with the Court Clerk and serve both class counsel and defense counsel with such notice of intention to appear, no later than ten (10) days prior to the hearing. Only settlement class members who have timely filed and delivered properly completed written notices of objection and intent to appear will be entitled to be heard at the hearing unless the Court orders otherwise.
10. The final fairness hearing will be conducted before the undersigned in Courtroom 25 of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, located at 501 I Street, Sacramento, CA on Thursday, July 25, 2013, at 10:00 a.m.
IT IS SO ORDERED.