Northern Leasing Settlement

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Northern Leasing Settlement
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UPDATE:

The Order final approving the Settlement was granted on December 5, 2017. Settlement Payment checks are scheduled to be mailed out to valid claimants on or about February 26, 2018.

Additional updates will be posted as they arise.

 


The information contained on this website is only a summary of information presented in more detail in the Notice, which you can access by clicking here. Since this webpage is just a summary, you should review the Notice for additional details.

Your Legal Rights Are Affected Whether You Act or Do Not Act. Please Read the Notice Carefully.


If you leased a credit card processing terminal or swipe pad, and you paid or were asked to pay taxes or fees on the lease by Northern Leasing Systems, Inc.; MBF Leasing LLC; Northern Funding LLC; SKS Associates, LLC; or their affiliates, a class action settlement may affect you.

 

 

YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS AND OPTIONS IN THIS SETTLEMENT

DEADLINE

Submit a Claim Form

The only way to get payment.

The claim filing deadline has been extended to January 4, 2018

The deadline to file a claim has passed.

Exclude Yourself

Get out of the lawsuit and the settlement. This is the only option that allows you ever to bring or join any other lawsuit against Leasing Defendants that raises legal claims that are being settled. You will receive no payment.

October 31, 2017

The deadline to exclude yourself from the Settlement has passed.

Object

Write to the Court about why you don’t like the settlement, the amount of attorneys’ fees, or the payments to the class representatives.

October 31, 2017

The deadline to object to the Settlement has passed.

Go to a Hearing

Speak in Court about the settlement. (If you object to any aspect of the settlement, you must submit a written objection by the Objection Deadline.)

November 28, 2017, 2:30 p.m.

Do Nothing

You will receive no payment and have no right to sue later for the claims released by the settlement.

 

 

         These rights and options—and the deadlines to exercise them—are explained in the notice.

 

         The Court in charge of this case still has to decide whether to approve the settlement. Payments will be made if the Court approves the settlement and after appeals are resolved. Please be patient.

 

 

How Do I Know If I Am Affected by the Settlement?

The Court has certified two classes. Those classes are as follows:

 

(1)   All persons and businesses who from March 26, 2006 to the present paid any of the Leasing Defendants property taxes based on a cost greater than the “equipment cost.” “Leasing Defendants” means Northern Leasing Systems, Inc.; MBF Leasing LLC; Northern Funding LLC; Jay Cohen; Leonard Mezei; Sara Krieger; Sam Buono; and SKS Associates, LLC. (This class is called the “Property Tax Equipment Cost Basis Class.”)

 

(2)   All persons and businesses whose lease numbers appeared on “Schedule 1.” A copy of Schedule 1 is available for review here. (This class is called the “SKS Post-Lease Expiration Class.”)

 

The two classes combined will be referred to as the “Settlement Class.” The Settlement Class excludes (1) the Honorable Judge Claudia Wilken and any member of her immediate family; (2) any government entity; (3) any person or entity who acted as an independent sales organization or independent sales or marketing agent on behalf of Leasing Defendants with respect to any equipment finance lease; (4) any of the Released Parties (defined below); (5) Antonio Piazza and Mark Segall and any members of their immediate families; and (6) any persons who timely opt out of the Settlement Class.



If you received a mailed copy of the Settlement Notice, Leasing Defendants' records reflect that you are a member of the Settlement Class.

 

 

What Is the Lawsuit About?

The lawsuit was filed in March 2010 by several small businesses and the owners of those businesses. The Plaintiffs’ names are Rainbow Business Solutions d/b/a Precision Tune Auto Care; Dietz Towing, Inc.; Just Film, Inc., which has been dissolved; Volker Von Glasenapp; Jerry Su; Verena Baumgartner d/b/a Burlingame Motors; Terry Jordan; the Estate of Lewis Bae; The Rose Dress, Inc.; and Erin Campbell (collectively, “Plaintiffs”).

On behalf of the Settlement Class, Plaintiffs allege violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act; breach of contract; breach of the duty of good faith; and unfair business practices under California Business and Professions Code sections 17200, et seq.

Leasing Defendants deny that there is any factual or legal basis for Plaintiffs’ allegations. Leasing Defendants deny any liability and deny that Plaintiffs or any other members of the Settlement Class have suffered injury or are entitled to monetary or any other relief.

The Court has not determined whether Plaintiffs or Leasing Defendants are correct.

 

What Can I Get in the Settlement?

Every Settlement Class member who files a Valid Claim (defined below) will receive the following benefits:

 

(a)   Each member of the SKS Post-Lease Expiration Class from whom monies were actually collected in connection with the SKS Allegations (described in the Notice) shall receive the full amount collected, less any refund provided to and received by such Settlement Class Member in the New York Attorney General Settlement, plus $41.75.


(b)   Each member of the SKS Post-Lease Expiration Class from whom monies were not actually collected in connection with the SKS Allegations shall receive $15.


(c)   Each member of the Property Tax Equipment Cost Basis Class shall receive $14.25 for each year after March 26, 2006 that he, she or it paid any Leasing Defendants property taxes based on a cost greater than the “equipment cost.”

 

A “Valid Claim” is one filed by a Settlement Class member who attests, under penalty of perjury, that (1) Leasing Defendants collected or attempted to collect property taxes or administrative fees from the Settlement Class Member in connection with a credit card equipment finance lease; (2) the Settlement Class Member (a) believes the amounts charged by the Leasing Defendants were improper or (b) spent time or money investigating or disputing the charges; and (3) the Settlement Class Member wishes to obtain the benefits provided under this settlement.

 

 

How Do I Make a Claim?

If you want to participate in the settlement, you must complete and submit a Claim Form. We urge you to submit a Claim Form online by clicking here.


If you do not wish to file online, you can file a paper Claim Form by mail. A copy of the Claim Form is available for download here. You can also obtain a copy of the claim form by calling, toll-free, 1-877-221-7632.

Please follow the mailing instructions on the form.


Your claim form must be submitted online or postmarked by January 4, 2018.

 

 

Fairness Hearing

On November 28, 2017, at 2:30 p.m., the Court will hold hearings to determine (1) whether the proposed settlement is fair, reasonable and adequate and should receive final approval; (2) whether the applications for attorneys’ fees and/or expenses brought by the Plaintiffs’ Counsel should be granted; and (3) whether the application for class representative payments to the Plaintiffs who brought the lawsuit should be granted. The hearing will be held in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, 1301 Clay Street, Oakland, CA 94612. The hearing will be held in the courtroom of the Honorable Claudia Wilken, which is Courtroom 2, Fourth Floor.

 

The Court may change the date and time of the Fairness Hearing without another notice being sent to Class Members. Please check this website for any updates to the date and time of the Fairness Hearing.


How Do I Get More Information?

For more details regarding this Settlement, please see the Settlement Agreement or other documents filed in the case under the “Court Documents” link on the left. You may also contact the Claim Administrator or Plaintiffs’ Counsel for further information regarding this Settlement:

 

Claim Administrator:

 

Northern Leasing Settlement

Claim Administrator

c/o A.B. Data, Ltd.

P.O. Box 173043

Milwaukee, WI  53217

877-221-7632

info@northernleasingsettlement.com

 

Plaintiffs’ Counsel:

 

Rainbow Business Solutions, et al. v. Northern Leasing, Inc., et al. Settlement

Gutride Safier LLP

100 Pine Street, Suite 1250

San Francisco, CA  94111



Please read the Notice carefully. If you have questions, you may call the Northern Leasing Settlement Help Line at 877-221-7632 or email info@northernleasingsettlement.com.

 

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