Who is a Class Member?
On April 26, 2017, the Court ordered that all persons residing in Minnesota who, from October 2, 2013 to December 31, 2016 met the following criteria were eligible for class membership:
(a) Entered into one or more consumer short-term loans with Payday America, Inc., wherein each loan contained a principal amount, or an advance on a credit limit, of $1,000 or less and required a minimum payment within 60 days of loan origination or credit advance of more than 25 percent of the principal balance or credit advance; and
(b) At the time of origination for each loan transaction, was assessed a finance charge consisting of the following components: “Financing Charge resulting from application of Monthly Periodic Rate,” “Cash Advance Charge,” and “Annual Fee Applicable to Advances,” and
(c) Received a standard form “Periodic Statement with Cash Advance Feature” at the time of each loan origination or cash advance that stated the actual annual percentage rate (APR) for each loan in less than 24 point type.
In addition, all persons who meet the following criteria are eligible for the debt-collection subclass membership:
All those persons identified in (a) – (c) of this definition and who were sent letters by Payday America, Inc., informing the class member of loan default and/or who were served with process in one or more collection lawsuits in a Conciliation Court in Minnesota.
If you meet the criteria above, you are a Class Member. Jason Dobosenski is the Class Representative and Vildan Teske and Marisa Katz of Teske, Katz, Kitzer & Rochel, PLLP were appointed by the Court as the Class Counsel.
How Does This Lawsuit Affect Me?
The Notice of Class Action Settlement and Fairness Hearing has been approved pursuant to an order of the Fourth Judicial District Court, Hennepin County, Minnesota. The Notice tells you about the Plaintiff Class, the lawsuit and resulting settlement, the benefits afforded class members under the Settlement Agreement, and an award of attorneys’ fees and class representative service award to be requested by Plaintiff at the Fairness Hearing. Nothing in the Notice should be taken as an expression by the Court of any opinion as to the ultimate outcome of the lawsuit.
This Settlement is a result of nearly three years of hard-fought litigation by the Parties.
What are the benefits under the Settlement?
You do not need to do anything to receive the below benefits. As a class member, you will automatically benefit from the Settlement, if finally approved, and be bound by the Settlement Agreement.
- Payday America Agrees to Permanently Change Its Payday Loan Product and the Higher Fees Associated with that Product. Payday America agrees to no longer market and sell the payday loan product that is the subject of this lawsuit as “open-end” credit, and further agrees that if it sells the loan product that is the subject of this lawsuit, then it will not assess, charge, and collect annual charges and cash advance fees in violation of Minnesota Statute Section 47.59, as amended. Assuming that Payday America continued to offer the loan product that is the subject of this lawsuit as “open-end” credit, this agreement will result in $7 million to $9 million in savings to customers of Payday America over the next seven years. In addition, to the extent required under Minn. Stat. § 47.601, Payday America agrees to disclose the actual Annual Percentage Rate (APR) calculated at the time each loan product is taken out by a consumer borrower in at least bold, 24-point type.
- Class Member Accounts. Payday America will reduce to $0 any balances owed on class member accounts that arose from a payday loan taken out during the class period. Payday America will also cease any and all collection efforts on active class member accounts for any amounts owed on a payday loan taken during the Class Period.
- Relief from Judgments. For Class Member Accounts in which debt collection judgments have already been rendered against the class member, Payday America will file documents in court that will indicate satisfaction of unsatisfied judgments entered against class members that arose from a payday loan taken out during the class period.
What Do I Need to Do?
You do not need to do anything. You are a Class Member because you did not affirmatively opt-out of the class action litigation by the deadline set forth in the Notice of Pending Class Action (sent on August 11, 2017). You do not need to do anything to receive the benefits included in the Agreement. As a Class Member, however, you are also legally bound by the terms of the Agreement, including a release in which any claims that you may have relating to the law and/or facts at issue in this lawsuit for the applicable class period cannot be brought in any other lawsuit against Payday America.
As a Class Member, you had the right to object to the Settlement Agreement and to appear and be heard at the Fairness Hearing.
PLEASE NOTE: The deadline to file any objection to this settlement has passed. The Court finally approved this settlement on August 24, 2018.
The Fairness Hearing at which the Court approved the Settlement took place at 8:45 AM on Friday, August 24, 2018, in Courtroom 1753 at the Hennepin County Government Center, 300 South Sixth Street, Minneapolis, MN 55487.
How Can I Get More Information?
Questions may be directed to the Class Administrator:
By Phone: 1 (888) 256-5633
By Mail: Dobosenski v. Payday America, Inc. Class Administrator
1801 Market Street, Suite 660
Philadelphia, PA 19103.