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NOTICE OF PENDENCY OF CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT
AND HEARING DATE FOR COURT APPROVAL
Stevens et al., v. Bank of England dba ENG Lending
San Diego Superior Court Case No. 37-2019-00018662-CU-OE-CTL

YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS MAY BE AFFECTED WHETHER YOU ACT OR DO NOT ACT.  PLEASE READ THIS CLASS NOTICE CAREFULLY.

SUMMARY OF YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS AND OPTIONS IN THIS SETTLEMENT:
Do Nothing and Receive a Payment If you are a member of the Settlement Class, you will automatically receive a payment if you do not exclude yourself.

Your estimated Individual Settlement Payment is: $«Total_Est_Settlement_Amount»

Your estimated share of the PAGA Group Payment is: $«PAGA_Est_Settlement».

After final approval by the Court, the payment will be mailed to you at the same address as this Class Notice. If your address has changed, please notify the Settlement Administrator as explained below.

Exclude Yourself To exclude yourself, you must send a letter to the Settlement Administrator as provided below on or before September 14, 2020.  If you request exclusion, you will receive no money from the Settlement but you will still receive your pro-rata share of the PAGA Group Payment. Instructions are set forth below.
Object Write to the Court about why you do not like the settlement.  Directions are provided below.  Written objections must be submitted by September 14, 2020.

 

1.   Why did I get this Class Notice?

A proposed class action settlement (the “Settlement”) of the above-captioned lawsuit filed in the Superior Court of the State of California, in and for the County of San Diego (the “Court”), has been reached by the parties and has been granted preliminary approval by the Court supervising the Action.

You have received this Class Notice because you have been identified as a member of the Settlement Class and/or PAGA Group which are defined as:

Settlement Class. All current and former non-exempt loan officers and loan officer assistants paid on a draw who worked for defendant Bank of England dba ENG Lending in California (“Settlement Class”) at any time during the between April 10, 2015 and March 27, 2020 (“Class Period”).

PAGA GroupThe State of California and all of defendant Bank of England dba ENG Lending’s current and former non-exempt loan officers and loan officer assistants paid on a draw that worked in California (“PAGA Group”) at any time between April 10, 2018 and the March 27, 2020 (“PAGA Period”).

This Class Notice explains the lawsuit, the Settlement, and your legal rights. It is important that you read this Class Notice carefully as your rights may be affected by the Settlement.


2.   What is this class action lawsuit about?

On April 10, 2019, Plaintiffs Richard Stevens, Benjamin Espinoza, Derek Wilson, John Hempstead, Justin Badum, Mark Conner, Mathew Handleman, Nicholas Lauko, Sean Martinez and Sean Diaz (collectively “Plaintiffs”) filed a Complaint against Bank of England dba ENG Lending (“Defendant”) in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of San Diego, Case No. 37-2019-00016882-CU-OE-CTL (the “Action”).  The Action alleges the following claims and violations against Defendant: (1) failure to provide require meal periods, (2) failure to provide required rest periods, (3) failure to pay overtime wages, (4) failure to pay minimum wages, (5) failure to pay all wages when due to discharged and quitting employees, (6) failure to maintain required records, (7) failure to furnish accurate itemized wage statements, (8) unlawful deductions, (9) unfair competition, and (10) civil penalties under the Private Attorney General Act pursuant to California Labor Code §§ 2698 et seq (“PAGA”). Plaintiffs seek to represent a putative class of all current and former non-exempt loan officers and loan officer assistants paid on a draw who worked for Defendant during the Class Period.  Generally, Plaintiffs allege that Defendant failed to accurately pay Class Members all wages due, including, overtime wages, minimum wages and paid rest periods, failed to provide Class Members with proper meal breaks and rest breaks, failed to provide Class Members with complete and accurate wage statements, and failed to timely pay Class Members all wages owed at the time of the termination of their employment

Additionally, pursuant to PAGA, Plaintiffs brought the action as the authorized representative on behalf of the State of California to recover civil penalties arising from the same Labor Code violations committed against the members of the PAGA Group.

Defendant denies that it violated the law in any way, and further denies that the Action is appropriate for class treatment for any purpose other than this settlement.  Nothing in this Class Notice, or the Settlement itself, or any actions to carry out the terms of the Settlement mean that the Defendant admits any fault, guilt, negligence, wrongdoing or liability whatsoever.  The Court has made no findings regarding the above claims.

The Court granted preliminary approval of the Settlement on July 7, 2020.  At that time, the Court also preliminarily approved Plaintiffs to serve as the Class Representatives, and the law firms of JCL Law Firm, APC and Purdy & Bailey, LLP, to serve as Class Counsel. 

3.   What are the terms of the Settlement?

Settlement Payment. Defendants have agreed to pay Five Hundred Thousand Dollars ($500,000) (called the “Total Settlement Amount”) to fully resolve the claims in the Action.  The Total Settlement Amount includes all Individual Settlement Payments to Settlement Class Members that do not submit a timely request for exclusion, the Class Representative Service Payments, all attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses of Class Counsel awarded by the Court, the PAGA Payment to the LWDA in connection with PAGA Settlement, and the costs of the Settlement Administrator.  No amount of the Total Settlement Amount will revert to Defendant for any reason.

Defendant will fund the Total Settlement Amount by depositing the money with the Settlement Administrator within ten (10) days of the Effective Date.  Within twenty-five (25) days after Defendant funds the Total Settlement Amount, the Settlement Administrator will mail checks for the Individual Settlement Payments to each Settlement Class Member that has not submitted a timely request for exclusion.

Settlement Administration and Other Payments.  The Court has tentatively approved certain payments to be made from the Total Settlement Amount as follows, which will be subject to final Court approval:

  • Settlement Administration. Payment to the Settlement Administrator, estimated to be $8,500, for the expense of notifying the Class Members of the Settlement, processing requests to be excluded from the settlement submitted by Class Members, and distributing settlement payments.
  • Attorneys’ Fees, Expenses, and Costs.  Payment to Court-approved Class Counsel of reasonable attorneys’ fees not to exceed $166,500 (33.3% of the Total Settlement Amount) as their Class Counsel Fees Payment and an amount not more than $20,000 for all expenses incurred as documented in Class Counsel’s billing records as their Class Counsel Litigation Expenses Payment.  Class Counsel has been prosecuting the Action on behalf of Plaintiff and the Class on a contingency fee basis (that is, without being paid any money to date) and has been paying all litigation costs and expenses.
  • Class Representative Service Payments.  A service award not to exceed a total of $50,000, representing a $5,000 award to each Plaintiff to compensate each of them for their services on behalf of the Settlement Class Members in initiating and prosecuting the Action.  This payment is in addition to whatever payment the Plaintiffs are otherwise entitled to as a Settlement Class Member.
  • PAGA Settlement.  Twenty-Five Thousand Dollars ($25,000) shall be allocated from the Total Settlement Amount for settlement of claims for civil penalties under the Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (“PAGA Settlement”).  The Settlement Administrator shall pay seventy-five percent (75%) of the PAGA Settlement ($18,750) to the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency no later than twenty-five (25) calendar days after the Funding Date (hereinafter “PAGA Payment”).  Twenty-five (25%) of the PAGA Settlement ($6,250) will be distributed to the PAGA Group (hereinafter “PAGA Group Payment”).

Calculation of Class Member Settlement Shares. After the above payments are subtracted from the Total Settlement Amount, the remaining amount (the “Net Settlement Amount”) will be used to make Individual Settlement Payments to each Settlement Class Member that does not submit a timely request for exclusion.  The Net Settlement Amount is estimated to be $230,000.

Individual Settlement Payments will be calculated by Settlement Administrator using the Class Data, by adding up the total number of Workweeks (meaning the number of weeks of employment while paid on a draw  during the Class Period) for all participating Settlement Class Members.  The respective Workweeks for each participating Settlement Class Member will be divided by the total Workweeks for all participating Settlement Class Members, resulting in the Payment Ratio for each participating Settlement Class Member.  Each participating Settlement Class Member’s Payment Ratio will then be multiplied by the Net Settlement Amount to calculate each Settlement Class Member’s estimated Individual Settlement Payments.  Each Individual Settlement Payment will be reduced by any legally mandated employee tax withholdings (e.g., employee payroll taxes, etc.).  Individual Settlement Payments for the Settlement Class Members who submit valid and timely requests for exclusion will be redistributed to the participating Settlement Class Members on a pro rata basis based on their respective Payment Ratios.

Settlement Class Members who do not submit a request for exclusion from the Settlement as provided for below will be entitled to receive a payment pursuant to the Settlement.  If you do nothing, you will be deemed a participating Settlement Class Member, settlement checks will automatically be mailed to you, and you will release all claims you may have related to the allegations in the case, as described below.

Calculation of the PAGA Group Payment. For purposes of distributing the PAGA Group Payment to the PAGA Group Members, the Settlement Administrator shall use the Class Data to add up the total number of Workweeks for all PAGA Group Members during the PAGA Period.  The respective Workweeks for each PAGA Group Member during the PAGA Period will then be divided by the total number of Workweeks during the PAGA Period for all PAGA Group Members resulting in a “PAGA Payment Ratio” for each PAGA Group Member.  Each PAGA Group Member’s respective PAGA Payment Ratio will then by multiplied by the PAGA Group Payment to calculate each PAGA Group Member’s respective share of the PAGA Group Payment.

Tax Matters.  For the purpose of calculating applicable taxes, Individual Settlement Payments shall be allocated and treated as follows: twenty percent (20%) as wages subject to wage withholdings, and shall be reported on IRS Form W-2 and eighty percent (80%) for interest (15%) and penalties (65%) allegedly due to employees which is not subject to wage withholdings, and shall be reported on IRS Form 1099.  Participating Settlement Class Members shall be exclusively liable for any employee’s share of tax liability, if any.  Settlement Class Members may wish to consult their tax advisors concerning the tax consequences of the payments they receive under the Settlement.

  1. Class Action Release.  As of the Funding Date, the participating Settlement Class Members shall the Defendant its respective owners, directors, officers, shareholders, managers, principals, subsidiaries, affiliated companies, employees, successors, and/or assigns (“Released Parties”) from all claims, actions, demands, causes of action, suits, debts, obligations, damages, penalties, rights or liabilities, of any nature and description whatsoever, that are based on or reasonably related to the claims asserted in the Action, and specifically the following claims based on or reasonably relating to claims asserted or alleged in the action: claims for unpaid wages (including claims for regular wages, overtime, final wages, and meal period and rest period premiums), interest, penalties (including waiting time penalties pursuant to Labor Code section 203 and wage statement penalties pursuant to Labor Code section 226), claims pursuant to Labor Code sections 201, 201.3, 202, 203, 204, 210, 218.5, 218.6, 226, 226.3, 226.7, 510, 512, 558, 1174(d), 1174.5, 1194, 1194.2, 1197, 1197.1, 1198, 1199, 2698 et seq., 2802 and 2804, the Industrial Welfare Commission Wage Orders, claims under Business and Professions Code section 17200, et seq., unclaimed compensatory, consequential, incidental, liquidated, punitive, and exemplary damages, restitution, interest, costs and attorneys’ fees, injunctive or equitable relief, and any other remedies available at law or in equity allegedly owed or available to the putative class members arising or reasonably flowing from any complaints (or amended complaints) filed in the Action occurring during the Class Period.
  2. PAGA Release.  As of the Funding Date, the PAGA Group shall release the Released Parties from any and all claims and causes of action, known or unknown, contingent or accrued, arising out of the facts and claims asserted in the Action for civil penalties under the Private Attorney General Act of 2004 Cal. Labor Code § 2698 et seq. based upon the facts alleged: failure to provide meal and rest breaks; unpaid wages, including minimum wages, regular wages, overtime and double time wages; unpaid rest breaks, any and all theories for or related to “off the clock” work; wage statement violations; and separation pay violations. This release extends only to the penalties available through PAGA.

Conditions of Settlement.  This Settlement is conditioned upon the Court entering an order and judgment at or following a final approval hearing on the Settlement.


4.   How much will my payment be?

  1. Individual Settlement Payment 

    Defendant’s records reflect that you have «Total_Workweeks» Workweeks during the Class Period. 

    Your estimated Individual Settlement Payment is $«Total_Est_Settlement_Amount». 

  2. Share of PAGA Group Payment 

    Defendant’s records reflect that you have «PAGA_Workweeks» Workweeks during the PAGA   Period. 

    Your estimated share of the PAGA Group Payment is $«PAGA_Est_Settlement».

If you wish to challenge the information stated immediately above, then you must submit a written, signed challenge along with supporting documents, if any exist, to the Settlement Administrator at the address provided in this Class Notice no later than forty-five (45) calendar days after the postmark date of this Class Notice.

5.   How can I get a payment?

To receive a payment under this Settlement, you do not have to do anything.  A check for your Settlement Share will be mailed automatically to the same address as this Class Notice.  If your address is incorrect or has changed, you must notify the Settlement Administrator.  The Settlement Administrator is: ILYM Group, Inc. P.O. Box 2031 Tustin, CA 92781, (888) 250-6810.

The Court will hold a hearing on October 16, 2020 to decide whether to approve the Settlement.  If the Court approves the Settlement and there are no objections or appeals, settlement payments will be mailed to you within 45 days.  If there are objections or appeals, resolving them can take time, perhaps more than a year.  Please be patient.

6.   What if I don’t want to be a part of the Settlement?

If you do not wish to participate in the Settlement, you may exclude yourself from the Settlement or “opt-out.”  Any Settlement Class Member who requests to be excluded or opt-out as a Settlement Class Member will not be entitled to an Individual Settlement Payment and will not be otherwise bound by the terms of the Settlement including the Class Action Release or have any right to object, appeal or comment thereon.  However, any Settlement Class Member that submits a timely request for exclusion that is also a member of the PAGA Group will still receive their pro rata share of the PAGA Group Payment, and in consideration, will be bound by the PAGA Release as set forth herein.

To opt-out, you must submit a written request to the Settlement Administrator that states “I do not want to be part of the settlement class in the Stevens et al., v. Bank of England dba ENG Lending class action.”  This request for exclusion or opt-out must be (a) signed and dated; (b) state the Settlement Class Member’s name, address, Social Security Number, and telephone number; and (d) be postmarked no later than September 14, 2020.  Written requests for exclusion that are postmarked after September 14, 2020, or otherwise fail to meet the requirements set forth in this paragraph, will be rejected, and those Settlement Class Members will remain bound by the Settlement and the release described above.  A Settlement Class Member who properly and timely submits a request for exclusion or opt-out will not be bound by the Class Action Release and will not receive an Individual Settlement Payment but will, however, receive their share of the PAGA Group Payment and be bound by the PAGA Release.

7.   How do I tell the Court that I don’t like the Settlement?

Any Settlement Class Member, who has not opted out and believes that the Settlement should not be finally approved by the Court for any reason, may object to the proposed Settlement.  Objections may be in writing and state the Settlement Class Member’s name, current address, telephone number, dates of employment with Defendant, and describe why the objector believes the Settlement is unfair and whether the objector intends to appear at the final approval hearing.  The objections must be submitted to the Settlement Administrator at the below addresses on or before September 14, 2020.  All written objections or other correspondence must also state the name and number of the case, which is Stevens et al., v. Bank of England dba ENG Lending, in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of San Diego, Case No. 37-2019-00018662-CU-OE-CTL.  To object to the Settlement, you must remain a member of the Settlement Class, and if the Court approves the Settlement, you will be bound by the terms of the Settlement.  Any Settlement Class Member who does not object in the manner provided in this Class Notice shall have waived any objection to the Settlement, whether by appeal or otherwise.

Objections may also be made orally, with or without submitting a written objection, by appearing at the Final Approval Hearing on the date and time, and at the location, described in Section 8 below. Settlement Class Members may appear, either in person or through their own attorney at their expense, at the final approval hearing and have their objections heard by the Court.

The address for the Settlement Administrator is

Stevens v. Bank of England – Settlement Administrator
c/o ILYM Group, Inc.
P.O. Box 2031
Tustin, CA 92781
Phone: (888) 250-6810

 

The addresses for Parties’ counsel are as follows:

Class Counsel:
Jean Claude Lapuyade, Esq.
JCL LAW FIRM, APC
3990 Old Town Ave., Suite C204
San Diego, CA 92110
Tel: 619-599-6999 / Fax: 619-599-8291
Email: jlapuyade@jcl-lawfirm.com
Website: www.jcl-lawfirm.com

Micah Bailey, Esq.
PURDY & BAILEY, LLP
12520 High Bluff Drive, Suite. 220
San Diego, CA 92130
Tel: 858-564-0136 / Fax: 858-564-0142
Email: mbailey@purdybailey.com

Counsel for Defendants
Tammara N. Bokmuller, Esq.
BOWMAN & BROOKE, LLP
750 B Street, Suite 2200
San Diego, CA 92101


8.  When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the Settlement?

The Court will hold a Final Approval Hearing at 10:30 AM on October 16, 2020, at the San Diego County Superior Court in Department C-70 located at 330 W. Broadway, San Diego California 92101.  At this hearing the Court will consider whether the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate.  The purpose of this hearing is for the Court to determine whether to grant final approval to the Settlement.  If there are objections, the Court will consider them.  The Court will listen to people who wish to make an objection.  This hearing may be rescheduled by the Court without further notice to you.  You are not required to attend the Final Approval Hearing, although any Class Member is welcome to attend the hearing.


9.   How do I get more information?

You may call the Settlement Administrator at (888) 250-6810 or write to Stevens v. Bank of England dba ENG Lending – Settlement Administrator, c/o ILYM Group, Inc. P.O. Box 2031 Tustin, CA 92781; or contact Class Counsel at 1-888-498-6999.

You may receive a copy of the Settlement, the Final Judgment or other settlement documents by writing to The JCL Law Firm, APLC, 3990 Old Town Avenue, Suite C204, San Diego, CA 92110.  You may also get more details by examining the documents in the court’s file at the Clerk’s Office located at 330 W. Broadway, San Diego California 92101 or visiting the Court’s Register of Actions.

PLEASE DO NOT CALL THE COURT ABOUT THIS CLASS NOTICE.

IMPORTANT:

  • You must keep the Settlement Administrator aware of any change of address to ensure receipt of your settlement payment.

 

  • Settlement checks will be null and void 180 days after issuance if not deposited or cashed.  In such event, the Settlement Administrator shall direct such unclaimed funds to the Children’s Advocacy Institute in the name of the Participating Class Member who failed to cash the check.  If your check is lost or misplaced, you should contact the Settlement Administrator immediately to request a replacement.
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