When you receive notification that preliminary settlement talks have been successful in your case, you will receive what is called settlement notice. This will have a date that has been sent for the final approval hearing.
This part of the process can sometimes be confusing for plaintiffs, so the team asked www.dolmanlaw.com have commissioned this article to try and answer some questions.
- What does this all mean?
- How do I go from a settlement talk to receiving a check?
- And how long will this process take?
After waiting patiently through years of discovery, motions to dismiss, amendments, objections, and extensions, a settlement finally seems near.
What are settlement talks?
For a case to progress to the stage of settlement talks, many critical factors have to be determined. Such as the strength of any plaintiffs’ claim, the overall cost of further litigation, and from the defendant’s perspective potential cost of the negative publicity they would receive if the case actually went to trial.
What will be discussed? Who is in the class?
Before the settlement can move any further, both to defendants and plaintiffs, need to clearly define who the agreement will cover.
One of the critical parts of any settlement discussion is the amount and type of compensation that will be provided to the members of the class.
Further details will be discussed?
Additional details will be discussed such as how the different members of the class would need to be notified.
Is mediation needed?
Occasionally mediation is needed as there are so many decisions to be made. The success of this agreement hinges on is based on the beliefs of two opposing parties largely being set aside. Coming to an agreement can prove challenging especially you and you have to satisfy both defendants and plaintiffs
The settlement receives preliminary approval
Once both parties settle on what they consider a satisfactory agreement, the settlement is handed over to the judge for review and given initial approval.
The class is notified.
Once the preliminary approval is granted, the notice of settlement is either delivered or advertised. It is common for settlement websites to be launched so class members can learn about your potential litigation and how to file claims.
What should you do?
In the vast majority of cases, consumers who are presented with their opportunity to enter the class and have one of three choices.
Enter a claim – you can file a claim by filling out a form that includes all your vital information.
Choose to be excluded – you have the option of choosing to be excluded from any initial settlement offer.
Lodge an objection – as a member of the class, you can launch a legal complaint to any proposed settlement if you believe it’s unreasonable or unfair.
The settlement is granted final approval.
Once a judge has decided that its settlement is adequate, reasonable, and fair, final approval will be granted. At this point settlement, checks will be sent to all members of the class.
As you can see, settlement talks can be a prolonged process, so it’s advisable not to celebrate too early. Keep a close eye on your email and websites related to the class, newsletters, and any other source of information that can provide you with up-to-date facts on the progressive any settlement talks.