Martin, et. al. v. Lindenwood University
Lindenwood University Settlement
Case No. 4:20-cv-01128-RLW

Frequently Asked Questions

 

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  • A Court authorized the notice because you had a right to know about a proposed Settlement of this class action lawsuit and about all of your options, before the Court decided to give final approval to the Settlement. The Notice explains the lawsuit, the Settlement, and your legal rights.

    The Honorable Ronnie L. White, of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, is overseeing this case. The case is called Martin v. Lindenwood University, Case No. 4:20-cv-01128-RLW.  The person who sued is called the Plaintiff.  The Defendant is Lindenwood University.

  • In a class action, one or more people called class representatives (in this case, Dylan Martin) sue on behalf of a group or a “class” of people who have similar claims. In a class action, the court resolves the issues for all class members, except for those who exclude themselves from the Class.

  • This lawsuit claims that Defendant breached its contract with its students to provide in-person educational services for the Spring 2020 Semester by transitioning to remote learning in March 2020 without issuing partial tuition and fee refunds. The Defendant denies it violated any law. The Court has not determined who is right. Rather, the Parties have agreed to settle the lawsuit to avoid the uncertainties and expenses associated with ongoing litigation.

  • The Court has not decided whether the Plaintiff or the Defendant should win this case. Instead, both sides agreed to a Settlement. That way, they avoid the uncertainties and expenses associated with ongoing litigation, and Class Members will get compensation sooner rather than, if at all, after the completion of a trial.

  • The Court decided that everyone who fits the following description is a member of the Settlement Class:

    All people who paid Defendant tuition or fees in the Spring 2020 Semester (including in connection with any school terms or courses offered in the Spring 2020) for educational services that, absent the COVID-19 pandemic, would have been provided in-person, and whose tuition and fees have not been refunded.

  • Monetary Relief: A Settlement Fund has been created totaling $1,650,000.00. Class Member payments, and the cost to administer the Settlement, the cost to inform people about the Settlement, attorneys’ fees (inclusive of litigation costs), and an award to the Class Representative will also come out of this fund (see FAQ 12).

    A detailed description of the settlement benefits can be found in the Settlement Agreement, a copy of which is accessible on the Important Documents page.

  • The amount of this payment will depend on how many requests for exclusion are submitted. Each Class Member who does not opt out of participating in the settlement will receive a proportionate share of the Settlement Fund, which will be based on the total out-of-pocket amount of tuition and fees the Class Member paid for the Spring 2020 Semester. You can contact Class Counsel at (646) 837-7150 to inquire as to the number of requests for exclusion that have been received to date.

  • The hearing to consider the fairness of the settlement was held on May 11, 2022.  The Court decided to approve the settlement, meaning eligible Class Members will receive their payment 60 days after the Settlement has been approved and/or after any appeals process is complete.  Payments will be made via a credit to all current student accounts or, for inactive students, either in the form of reducing an unpaid balance on the inactive student’s account, or via a check.  All checks will expire and become void 180 days after they are issued. We estimate that payments will be issued to class members on July 8, 2022 for this Settlement.

  • If you are a Class Member and you want to get a payment, do nothing and you will automatically receive a pro rata share of the Settlement Fund, which will be based on the total out-of-pocket amount of tuition and fees you paid for the Spring 2020 Semester.  Your payment will be either automatically applied to your account or will come by check to the residential address on file with LU.  You may have opted to receive your payment by Venmo or PayPal on the Election page by March 21, 2022.  If you have changed addresses or are planning to change addresses prior to July 10, 2022, please use the Contact Us page of the case website to complete and submit a change of address form.

  • Now that the Settlement has become final, you have given up your right to sue the Defendant and other Released Parties for the claims being resolved by this Settlement.  The specific claims you are giving up against the Defendant are described in the Settlement Agreement.  You will be “releasing” the Defendant and certain of its affiliates, employees and representatives as described in Section 1.24 of the Settlement Agreement.  Unless you excluded yourself, you are “releasing” the claims, regardless of whether you submit a claim or not. The Settlement Agreement is available on the Important Documents page of this website.

    The Settlement Agreement describes the released claims with specific descriptions, so read it carefully. If you have any questions you can talk to the lawyers listed in FAQ 11 for free or you can, of course, talk to your own lawyer if you have questions about what this means.
     

  • The Court has appointed Bursor & Fisher, P.A. to be the attorneys representing the Settlement Class. They are called “Class Counsel.” They believe, after conducting an extensive investigation, that the Settlement Agreement is fair, reasonable, and in the best interests of the Settlement Class. You will not be charged for these lawyers. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer in this case, you may hire one at your expense.

  • The Defendant has agreed that Class Counsel’s attorneys’ fees and costs may be paid out of the Settlement Fund in an amount to be determined by the Court. The fee petition will seek no more than one-third of the Settlement Fund, inclusive of reimbursement of their costs and expenses; the Court awarded this amount. Under the Settlement Agreement, any amount awarded to Class Counsel will be paid out of the Settlement Fund. 

    Defendant has agreed that the Class Representative may be paid a service award of $5,000 from the Settlement Fund for her services in helping to bring and resolve this case, which the Court has approved
    .

  • The deadline to exclude yourself from the Settlement was March 21, 2022, and has passed.

  • No. Unless you excluded yourself, you gave up any right to sue the Defendant for the claims being resolved by this Settlement.

    The deadline to exclude yourself from the Settlement was March 21, 2022, and has passed
     

  • No. If you excluded yourself, you will not receive any payment from the Settlement Fund.

    The deadline to exclude yourself from the Settlement was March 21, 2022, and has passed.

  • None. LU has provided to Class Counsel a list of the Class Members and their contact information. Also, the Court has issued an order permitting LU, under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”), to disclose to the settlement administrator and Class Counsel, the Spring 2020 Semester out-of-pocket amount for each Class Member. LU will release that information no later than five (5) days after March 21, 2022. On or before March 21, 2022, you as a Class Member have the option to request that the Court quash its order requiring such disclosure as to your information.

  • The deadline to object to the Settlement was March 21, 2022, and has passed.

  • Objecting simply means telling the Court that you don’t like something about the Settlement. You can object only if you stay in the Class. Excluding yourself from the Class is telling the Court that you don’t want to be part of the Class. If you excluded yourself, you have no basis to object because the case no longer affects you.

  • The Court held the Final Approval Hearing at 1:30 p.m. on May 11, 2022 at United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, 111 South 10th Street, St. Louis, MO 63102.  The purpose of the hearing was for the Court to determine whether to approve the Settlement as fair, reasonable, adequate, and in the best interests of the Class; to consider the Class Counsel’s request for attorneys’ fees and expenses; and to consider the request for an incentive award to the Class Representative.  At that hearing, the Court was available to hear any objections and arguments concerning the fairness of the Settlement.

    At the Final Approval hearing, the Court decided to approve the Settlement.

  • The Notice summarizes the Settlement. More details are in the Settlement Agreement. You can get a copy of the Settlement Agreement on the Important Documents page. You may also write with questions to Lindenwood University Settlement, c/o JND Legal Administration, P.O. Box 91349, Seattle, WA 98111. You can call the Settlement Administrator at (877) 389-2182 or Class Counsel at (646) 837-7150, if you have any questions. Before doing so, however, please read the full Notice carefully. You may also find additional information elsewhere on this website.

For More Information

Visit this website often to get the most up-to-date information.

Mail
Lindenwood University Settlement
c/o JND Legal Administration
P.O. Box 91349
Seattle, WA 98111