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Settlement

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Ordinarily, an order on a motion for an attorney fee award is appealable as a post-judgment order under CCP 904.1(a)(2).  But here, to maintain the trial court's jurisdiction to enforce a settlement agreement, the parties agreed that judgment would not be entered dismissing the action until after defendant had paid the settlement amount and any attorney fees awarded by the… Read More

Owners of adjoining apartments mediated Doe's civil harassment prevention action, reaching an agreement that provided, among other things, that the parties agree not to disparage one another.  This decision holds that read in light of the limited nature of the action and surrounding circumstances, the provision could not reasonably be read to ban Doe from saying negative things about Olson… Read More

A district court may approve a class action settlement that provides monetary relief only in the form of cy pres payments to non-parties, so long as distribution to class members is not possible and the recipients of the cy pres payments are appropriately chosen in light of the nature of the plaintiffs’ lawsuit, the objectives of the underlying statutes, and… Read More

In ruling on a motion for approval of a settlement of a PAGA claim, the trial court should apply the "fair, adequate and reasonable" standard applied to approval of class action settlements. Because many of the factors used to evaluate class action settlements bear on a settlement’s fairness—including the strength of the plaintiff’s case, the risk, the stage of the… Read More

Disagreeing with Turrietta v. Lyft, Inc. (2021) 2021 Cal. App. LEXIS 815, this decision holds that the plaintiff in one PAGA action is sufficiently aggrieved by an unfair settlement of a different plaintiff's parallel PAGA suit to have standing to appeal from the judgment following approval of settlement in the other action--so long as the appellant became a party to… Read More

Defendant's $200,000 998 offer was clear, not ambiguous, and was enforceable when plaintiff recovered less than $200,000--even though the offer did not refer to the workers’ compensation lien and state whether settlement proceeds could be used to recoup the lien.  Absence of a reference to the workers' comp. lien didn't render the offer uncertain or invalid.  A party making a… Read More

The district court erred in holding that this class settlement was not a coupon settlement within CAFA's meaning (see 28 USC 1712.  The settlement gave class members $36 or higher vouchers for defendant's services or products.  The relatively low amount of the smallest vouchers and limited (251) number of products or services they could purchase, showed these were coupons even… Read More

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