United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
DONNELL CREPPEL, ET AL.
REBEKAH GEE, ET AL.
ORDER OF PRELIMINARY APPROVAL OF CLASS ACTION
A. JACKSON, JUDGE
the Court is a Joint Motion for Preliminary Approval of Class
Settlement and to Set Fairness Hearing (Doc. 24). The parties
advise the Court that they have agreed to settle the
above-captioned lawsuit. The terms and conditions of the
settlement are set forth in a proposed Settlement Agreement
dated October 18, 2019 (Doc. 24-2). Capitalized terms not
otherwise defined in this Order shall have the same meaning
as ascribed to them in the Settlement Agreement.
reviewing the Settlement Agreement, it is
ORDERED that the Joint Motion (Doc.
24) is GRANTED.
FURTHER ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND DECREED:
Jurisdiction. The Court has
jurisdiction over the subject matter of this Action and over
all Parties to this Action.
Class Findings. The Court
preliminarily finds, for the sole purpose of settlement, that
the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 have
been met as to the Settlement Class, in that:
Class Members are so numerous that joinder of all of them in
the lawsuit is impracticable. See Mullen v. Treasure
Chest Casino, LLC, 186 F.3d 620, 624 (5th Cir. 1999)
("100 to 150 members ... is within the range that
generally satisfies the numerosity requirement.").
are questions of law and fact common to the Class Members.
See McWilliams v. Advanced Recovery Sys., Inc., 310
F.R.D. 337, 340 (S.D.Miss. 2015); Walker v. Greenspoon
Marder, P.A., No. 13-CV-14487, 2015 WL 233472, at *3
(S.D. Fla. Jan. 5, 2015) ("By definition, the class
contains only individuals who share a common question of law,
i.e., whether the 'Notice[s] identical to that attached
to Plaintiffs1 Complaint' violate the FDCPA. Each class
member's claim will rise or fall with the resolution of
that common contention.") (alteration in original and
internal record citation omitted).
claims of Named Plaintiffs are typical of the claims of the
Class Members. See Castro v. Collecto, Inc., 256
F.R.D. 534, 542 (W.D. Tex. 2009) ("Plaintiff has
sufficiently narrowed the class definition by limiting the
class to include individuals to whom Defendants mailed the
letter Plaintiff received.").
Plaintiffs and Class Counsel have fairly and adequately
represented and protected the interests of all of the Class
Members. See McWilliams, 310 F.R.D. at 340
("Ms. McWilliams's attorneys-Greenwald Davidson
Radbil PLLC-have been appointed as class counsel in more than
a dozen consumer protection class actions in the past two
years."). Continue to represent fairly and adequately
the interests of the Settlement Class. Accordingly, pursuant
to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(g)(2), the Court
preliminarily designates Amitai Heller and Jane Perkins as
Class Counsel with respect to the Settlement Class in this
Court having determined preliminarily that this action may
proceed as a non-opt-out class action under Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure 23(a) and 23(b)(1), members of the Settlement
Class shall be bound by any judgment concerning the
Settlement in this action, subject to the Court's final
determination as to whether this action may proceed as a
non-opt-out class action.
Approval of Settlement.
Court preliminarily finds that the settlement of the lawsuit,
on the terms and conditions set forth in the Settlement
Agreement, is in all respects fundamentally fair, reasonable,
adequate, and in the best interest of the Class Members,
especially in light of (i) the parties' arm's-length
settlement negotiations; (ii) the lack of evidence that the
settlement was obtained by fraud or collusion; (hi) the
complexity, expense, and likely duration of the litigation;
(iv) the stage of the proceedings and discovery completed to
support the proposed settlement; and (v) the opinion of
competent counsel supporting the settlement.