May 12, 2015
In a false advertising case, the Center objected to the settlement that gave class counsel $4.75M because it was based on an exaggerated value ($18.5M) of unidentified labeling changes. The district court approved the settlement, but reduced the fee request by $1.2M. The Center did not appeal.
February 12, 2015
CCAF's client objected to a fee request where class counsel sought 30% of the $75.4 million settlement fund in a lightly-litigated Telephone Consumer Protection Act case.
CCAF successfully sought discovery from class counsel regarding their lodestar (the actual time class counsel spent on the case) and their track record in other TCPA class actions. Discovery revealed that class counsel was requesting over $5300/hour for this case and was routinely compensated over $1000/hour, win or lose, for so-called "risky" TCPA litigation.
The district court reduced class counsel's fees by $6.9 million. CCAF appealed, arguing that even this reduction overcompensated class counsel under Seventh Circuit law, but later voluntarily dismissed when CCAF's client decided not to continue with the appeal.
June 4, 2014
The Center’s client objected to this settlement over car rental fees wherein plaintiffs’ lawyers sought $1.5M for themselves but only coupons for the class; the court rejected the settlement.
April 24, 2014
In this settlement over Apple power adapters, the district court failed to appraise class relief compared to the $3M that the settlement awarded to plaintiffs’ lawyers, and ordered an abusive appeal bond when the objectors appealed to the Ninth Circuit. The Ninth Circuit reversed and remanded.
August 26, 2013
Fraley, et al. v. Facebook, Inc., et al. was a class action lawsuit against Facebook in 2011 alleging the company used Facebook users’ names, pictures, and identities without their knowledge or consent to sell products or services via Facebook advertisements called "Sponsored Stories". Facebook and class members reached a settlement (first settlement) in 2012, which was denied preliminary approval at the district court level in August 2012 by Judge Richard G. Seeborg, who relied relying heavily on CCAF’s Bluetooth victory, singling out the self-dealing "clear sailing" and kicker provisions of the settlement. The parties revised the settlement—removing the “clear sailing provision—and it was approved in December 2012.
The Center for Class Action Fairness objected to this settlement in May 2013, as it would pay attorneys $7.5 million, and give some class members the opportunity to claim up to $10 from a net fund of about $9 -$10 million. However, if the number of claims was too high, the money would go to a selection of nonprofits instead, precluding any class distribution at all. CCAF objected to the excessive attorneys’ fees request, argued that the valuation of injunctive relief based on the cost to the defendant was invalid, and urged the court to increase the disbursements to class members rather than dispersing unclaimed funds to cy pres recipients.
August 7, 2013
The Center represented a shareholder objecting to a securities class action wherein the $16.5M plaintiffs’ attorneys’ fee request was 4.2 times their normal billing rate. The district court reduced the excessive fee request by $3M.
June 27, 2013
The district court sustained the Center’s objection to a settlement over shampoo labeling where the class would receive valueless injunctive relief and the attorneys sought nearly $1M for themselves.
May 15, 2013
The Ninth Circuit held that the Class Action Fairness Act requires that when class members obtain coupons in a settlement, the lawyers’ fees attributable to those coupons must themselves be based on the value of coupons that are redeemed. On remand, the district court reduced plaintiffs’ fee by 10% from the $1.5M requested.
April 11, 2013
As a result of the Center’s objection, the parties modified the settlement to increase direct payments to the class by over $5.8M. Our second objection resulted in a third-party recipient of settlement funds that better suited the purpose of the litigation.
October 26, 2012
The Center objected to a settlement that paid the class $0, established meaningless corporate governance changes, and paid the attorneys over $10 million: the court agreed that fees were excessive and reduced the request by $4.6 million.