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Veness v. Heywood, Cari & Anderson, S.C.

United States District Court, W.D. Wisconsin

May 16, 2018

DAVID W. VENESS and JULIE K. VENESS, on behalf of themselves and others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
HEYWOOD, CARI & ANDERSON, S.C., Defendant.

          FINAL ORDER AND JUDGMENT

          James D. Peterson, United States District Judge

         On May 5, 2017, David W. Veness and Julie K. Veness (“Plaintiffs”) filed a class action complaint (hereinafter referred to as the “Lawsuit”) against Heywood, Cari & Anderson, SC (“Defendant”) in the United States District Court, Western District of Wisconsin, No. 3:17-cv-00338, asserting class claims under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”), 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq.

         Defendant has denied any and all liability alleged in the Lawsuit.

         On November 8, 2017, after extensive arms-length negotiations, Plaintiffs and Defendant (hereinafter jointly referred to as the “Parties”) entered into a Class Action Settlement Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the “Settlement Agreement”), which is subject to review under Fed.R.Civ.P. 23.

         On November 16, 2017, the Parties filed the Settlement Agreement, along with Plaintiff's Unopposed Motion for Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement (the “Preliminary Approval Motion”). Defendant has caused to be served written notice of the proposed class settlement in compliance with the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 28 U.S.C. §§ 1332(D), 1453, and 1711-1715 within ten days of the filing of the Preliminary Approval Motion and Settlement agreement, as is required by law.

         On December 29, 2017, upon consideration of Plaintiffs' Preliminary Approval Motion and the record, the Court entered an Order of Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement (hereinafter referred to as the “Preliminary Approval Order”). Pursuant to the Preliminary Approval Order, the Court, among other things, (i) preliminarily certified a class of plaintiffs (hereinafter referred to as the “Class Members”) with respect to the claims asserted in the Lawsuit; (ii) preliminarily approved the proposed settlement; (iii) appointed Plaintiffs as the Class Representatives; (iv) appointed James L. Davidson of Greenwald Davidson Radbil PLLC and Matthew C. Lein of Lein Law Offices as Class Counsel; and, (v) set the date and time of the Settlement Approval Hearing.

         On April 4, 2018, Plaintiffs filed their Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement (the “Final Approval Motion”).

         On May 16, 2018, a Final Approval Hearing was held pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 23 to determine whether the Lawsuit satisfies the applicable prerequisites for class action treatment and whether the proposed settlement is fundamentally fair, reasonable, adequate, and in the best interest of the Class Members and should be approved by the Court.

         The Parties now request final certification of the settlement class under Fed.R.Civ.P. 23 (b)(3) and final approval of the proposed class action settlement.

         The Court has read and considered the Settlement Agreement, Motion for Final Approval, and the record of these proceedings. All capitalized terms used herein have the meanings defined herein and/or in the Agreement.

         NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED:

         The Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of the Lawsuit and over all settling parties hereto.

         CLASS MEMBERS - Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 23(b)(3), the Lawsuit is hereby certified, for settlement purposes only, as a class action on behalf of the following class of plaintiffs (hereinafter referred to as the “Class Members”) with respect to the claims asserted in the Lawsuit:

All persons in the state of Wisconsin on whom, between May 5, 2016 and May 5, 2017, Heywood, Cari & Anderson, SC served a “Notice Required by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (The Act), 15 U.S.C. Section 192 as Amended” as part of a lawsuit it filed against ...

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