This official website is maintained by the Claims Administrator in the Action, retained by and under the supervision of Class Counsel. Below are answers to certain Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQs”).
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|1.||What is this lawsuit about?|
Two class action lawsuits were originally filed against the Defendant. They were Nguyen v. Outerwall Inc., No. 5:16-cv-00611-LS (E.D. Pa.) and Boyer v. Outwerwall Inc., No. 2:17-cv-00853 (E.D. Pa.). For purposes of this Settlement, the two cases were consolidated into one action (the “Action”) which is pending in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania before U.S. District Judge Lawrence F. Stengel.
The people who brought the Action are called the Plaintiffs. The Plaintiffs in this case are April Nguyen and Brett Boyer. For purposes of the proposed Settlement, they have been appointed to represent the Settlement Class.
The entity the Plaintiffs sued is called the Defendant. In this case, Coinstar, LLC., is the Defendant.
The Action claims that the Defendant offered services at Coinstar Kiosks that were not independently useable by persons who are Legally Blind. For purposes of this settlement, Coinstar Kiosks are defined as a Coinstar-branded automated kiosk that permits individuals to exchange their coins for cash or a value product and is located at a retail store within the United States.
The proposed Settlement is the product of negotiations between Plaintiffs’ Counsel and the Defendant’s Counsel, with the assistance of federal Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Hey.
Defendant expressly denies any wrongdoing or liability of any kind, and believes that it would have been ultimately successful had the litigation continued.
In settling this Action, Plaintiffs do not concede that their claims lack merit.
|2.||Why is the Action a class action?|
In a class action, one or more people called class representatives (in this case April Nguyen and Brett Boyer), sue on behalf of other people who have similar claims. All of the people who have similar claims make up a “class” and are referred to individually as “class members.” Bringing a lawsuit as a class action allows the court to consider and resolve all at once many similar individual claims that might be economically too small to bring individually. The Action at issue here alleges wrongful conduct that is claimed to affect a large group of people in a similar way. Accordingly, the Plaintiffs filed their cases as class actions.
|3.||Why is there a Settlement?|
By agreeing to a Settlement, both sides avoid the risks and costs of a trial. The Settlement Class will benefit from injunctive relief that will provide accessibility solutions for Coinstar Kiosks in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The solutions include ensuring a functional and tactile keypad exists on each modified Kiosk, the addition of a 3.5mm headphone jack, and the addition of text-to-speech output via audio through the headphone jack. The California Sub-Class will further benefit from the creation of a $500,000.00 California Settlement Fund, created because of California law. The terms of the proposed Settlement will be reviewed by the Court.
The Plaintiffs and their attorneys think the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate. They also believe that the accessibility solutions resulting from the proposed Settlement are a good result for the Settlement Class. They further believe that the $500,000.00 California Settlement Fund is an excellent result for the California Sub-Class given the possibility that the members of the Proposed California Sub-Class could otherwise recover nothing if the claims were dismissed by the Court, and the likelihood that litigation of the Action would continue for many years.
|4.||How do I know if I am a member of the Settlement Class?|
All Legally Blind individuals who attempted but were unable to access or who were deterred from accessing those products or services available at Coinstar Kiosks in all 50 states and the District of Columbia during the time period starting on February 8, 2014 for all states and the District of Columbia and continuing through July 14, 2017 are members of the Settlement Class and are therefore affected by the Settlement.
|5.||How do I know if I am a member of the California Sub-Class?|
All Legally Blind individuals who attempted, but were unable to access or who were deterred from accessing those products or services available at Coinstar Kiosks in California during the time period starting on February 8, 2013 and continuing through July 14, 2017 are members of the California Sub-Class.
|6.||What if I am still not sure if I am included?|
If you are still not sure whether you are a member of the Settlement Class, you can consult with an attorney of your own choosing or you can call (855) 928-2272 for more information. Please do not call the Court or Coinstar.
|7.||Can I exclude myself from the Settlement Class?|
No. You will be bound by any judgments or orders that are entered in the Action, whether favorable or unfavorable.
|8.||Can I exclude myself from the damages portion of the California Sub-Class?|
Yes. You may exclude yourself from the California Sub-Class by mailing to the Claims Administrator an opt-out request containing the following language or words to the same effect:
I hereby exercise my right to Opt-Out of the California damages portion of the class action lawsuit. By Opting Out, I understand that I will not be awarded any statutory damages from this lawsuit but that I am preserving any rights I would otherwise have to sue Coinstar for damages.
Alternatively, you may complete and submit an opt-out request by clicking here. All requests to Opt-Out must be received by December 1, 2017.
|9.||How can I submit a claim for money damages (California Sub-Class members only)?|
You may be eligible for monetary relief under the Settlement if you were Legally Blind and between February 8, 2013 and July 14, 2017, while Legally Blind, you attempted but were unable to access or were deterred from accessing those products or services available at Coinstar Kiosks in California.
“Legally Blind” individuals include all persons with visual impairments who require the use of alternative techniques to accomplish tasks for which people without disabilities use sight. Some people who meet this definition have limited vision. Others have no vision.
If you believe you are eligible, you must submit a valid claim form on the settlement website by clicking here. Alternatively, you may request a claim from the Claims Administrator, by phone, letter, fax, or email at:
Nguyen v. Outerwall Inc. Claims Administrator P.O. Box 71 Tallahassee, FL 32302-0071 Toll-Free: (855) 928-2272 Fax: (850) 385-6008 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The deadline for submitting claims forms for California Sub-Class members is December 1, 2017. All Claim Forms must be submitted under penalty of perjury, either through a signature on Claim Forms submitted by mail or through a click-through agreement for Claim Forms submitted on-line. In addition, Claimants will be required, either through a signature on Claim Forms submitted by mail or through a click-through agreement for Claim Forms submitted on-line, to waive any rights or causes of action arising from the disclosure of information provided on Claim Forms.
The Claims Administrator has the right to ask for additional information if there is some question as to whether you are a valid member of the California Sub-Class.
|10.||What does the proposed Settlement provide?|
As part of the proposed Settlement, Defendants have agreed to modify one Coinstar-branded kiosk at each of its retail locations nationwide. The modifications, which will be completed within five years of the effective date of the Settlement Agreement, will include ensuring a functional and tactile keypad exists on each modified Kiosk, the addition of a 3.5mm headphone jack, and the addition of text-to-speech output via audio through the headphone jack.
Defendants have also agreed to create a $500,000.00 California Settlement Fund which will be distributed to members of the California Sub-Class who submit a valid claim form.
|11.||How much will members of the California Sub-Class receive?|
The amount of monetary damages that members of the California Sub-Class may receive will be based on the number of valid claim forms received by the Claims Administrator as of the claim deadline of December 1, 2017. Each eligible member of the California Sub-Class will be entitled to make one claim, which in no event will be worth more than $4,000.00. California Sub-Class Members will receive less than $4,000.00 if the total value of valid claims exceeds the value of the settlement fund (that is, if there are more than 125 claimants), in which case the value of all claims will be shared on a pro rata basis. In any event, each member who submits a valid claim form will receive an amount equal to that of each other member who has submitted a timely valid claim form. If there is money left over after payment of all valid claims, the left-over funds will be donated to one or more charitable organizations chosen by the Court at the Fairness Hearing. Claim Forms must be signed under penalty of perjury and the Claims Administrator has the right to investigate whether a claimant is a valid member of the California Sub-Class.
|12.||When would California Sub-Class members get their payment?|
The Court has scheduled a hearing on December 20, 2017, to decide whether to approve the Settlement. If the Court approves the Settlement, the Claims Administrator will issue checks within thirty days of the Effective Date of the Settlement Agreement to all members of the California Sub-Class who submitted valid claim forms. The exact date will depend on the timing of approval and whether there are any appeals.
|13.||What am I giving up in exchange for the Settlement payment?|
For all Members of the Settlement Class: Effective on the date of the Final Approval, Named Plaintiffs and the Settlement Class Members and each of their executors, successors, heirs, assigns, administrators, agents, and representatives, in consideration of the relief set forth herein, fully and finally release Coinstar and its present and former parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, and insurers, and each of their respective present, former, or future officers, directors, employees, shareholders, administrators, executors, affiliates, successors, and assigns from the Released Injunctive Claims as defined below.
The “Released Injunctive Claims” are any and all claims, rights, demands, charges, complaints, actions, suits, and causes of action for injunctive or declaratory relief relating to the subject matter of the Lawsuit, arising between February 8, 2014 (for all states and the District of Columbia excluding California) and February 8, 2013 in California through the date of Final Approval of this Agreement. The “Released Injunctive Claims” also include all claims, rights, demands, charges, complaints, actions, suits, causes of action, or liabilities of any kind for injunctive or declaratory relief based on conduct that occurs after Final Approval of this Agreement and during the Term of this Agreement to the extent that such claims arise out of or relate to actions, omissions, or conduct that are in compliance with the terms of the Agreement.
For California Sub-Class Claims Only: Effective on the date of Final Approval, Named Plaintiff Brett Boyer and all California Sub-Class Members who have not previously opted out of the Settlement Agreement, and each of their executors, successors, heirs, assigns, administrators, agents, and representatives, in consideration of the relief set forth herein, fully and finally release Coinstar and its present and former parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, and insurers, and each of their respective present, former, or future officers, directors, employees, shareholders, administrators, executors, affiliates, successors, and assigns from the Released Damages Claims as defined below.
The “Released Damages Claims” are any and all claims, rights, demands, charges, complaints, actions, suits, causes of action, and liabilities of any kind of damages relating to the subject matter of the Lawsuit, including, but not limited to, violations of the Unruh Civil Rights Act, California Civil Code §§ 51 et seq., the Disabled Persons Act, California Civil Code §§ 54 et seq., Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12181 et seq., arising between February 8, 2013 through entry of the Preliminary Approval and Scheduling Order. Also released are any and all claims, rights, demands, charges, complaints, actions, suits, and causes of action for injunctive or declaratory relief relating to the subject matter of the Lawsuit, arising between February 8, 2013 through entry of the Preliminary Approval and Scheduling Order. This also includes all claims, rights, demands, charges, complaints, actions, suits, causes of action, or liabilities of any kind for injunctive or declaratory relief based on conduct that occurs after Final Approval of this Agreement and during the Term of this Agreement to the extent that such claims arise out of or relate to actions, omissions, or conduct that are in compliance with the terms of the Agreement.
The above definitions include certain other terms that are separately defined in the proposed Class Action Settlement Agreement (“Settlement Agreement”) but are not reproduced here. For more information, please see the Settlement Agreement here.
|14.||Do I have a lawyer in this case?|
In its order directing distribution of Class Notice to the Class Members and scheduling the final Settlement hearing, the Court appointed the following law firms to represent the Settlement Class:
|Connolly Wells & Gray, LLP 2200 Renaissance Blvd, St. 275 King of Prussia, PA 19406 (610) 822-3700||Kalikhman & Rayz, LLC 1051 County Line Road Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006 (215) 364-5030|
These lawyers are called Class Counsel. If you want to be represented by your own attorney, you may hire one at your own expense.
|15.||How will the lawyers be paid?|
The Defendant has agreed to pay up to $210,000.00 to Class Counsel to compensate them for their work on the Action and to reimburse them for associated expenses. That amount is being paid by Defendant separate and apart from the California Settlement Fund, and is contingent upon approval by the Court. You are not responsible for paying Class Counsel.
Plaintiffs’ Counsel also intends to ask the Court to award Case Contribution Awards of up to $2,500.00 each for the Settlement Class representatives for their contributions to the prosecution and Settlement of the Action. Any such awards will be paid by the Defendant separate and apart from the California Settlement Fund.
Copies of Plaintiffs’ Counsel’s applications for attorneys’ fees, expenses and case contribution awards may be accessed (after they are filed) at the “Court Documents” link on the Home page.
|16.||How do I tell the Court that I do not like the proposed Settlement?|
You can ask the Court to deny approval of this settlement by filing an objection with the Court, including Plaintiff’s request for fees and/or Case Contribution Award. You cannot ask the Court to order a larger or different settlement; the Court can only approve or deny the proposed settlement. If you want the settlement to be rejected for any reason, you must object. You must object to the proposed settlement in writing and file your written objection with the Clerk of Court. You must set forth your full name, address, and signature, along with a statement of the reasons for your objection. The Court must receive your objection by December 1, 2017 for it to be considered. To file an objection, you must file it, including the case name and number, with the Clerk of Court either in person or by mail at:
Clerk of Court: Eastern District of Pennsylvania 601 Market Street Philadelphia, PA 19106-1797
If you file an objection, you may also appear at the final approval hearing which will address the settlement’s fairness. You may appear at the hearing either in person or through your own attorney. If you appear through your own attorney, you are responsible for paying that attorney.
|17.||Can I Opt Out of the Settlement?|
If you are a California Sub-Class Member, you have the right to opt out of the damages (money) portion of the settlement. If you opt out, you will not receive any monetary compensation from this settlement. California Sub-Class Members who opt out of the monetary portion of the settlement, however, will retain the right to file their own claims for damages (money) against Coinstar arising from access barriers they may have faced at Coinstar kiosks in California. You may complete and submit an opt-out request here or you may mail a completed opt-out request to the claims administrator at the address listed above in Question 9. Your opt-out statement must contain the following language or words to the same effect:
I hereby exercise my right to Opt-Out of the damages portion of the class action lawsuit known as Nguyen v. Outerwall, case no. 5:16-cv-00611. By Opting Out, I understand that I will not be awarded any statutory damages from this lawsuit but that I am preserving any rights I would otherwise have to sue Coinstar for damages.
All requests to opt out must be received by December 1, 2017. Please note that if the settlement is approved, all members of the class who do not properly opt-out will be bound by the monetary damages portion of the settlement. If a California Sub-Class Member submits both an Opt-Out Statement and a Valid Claim, the Opt-Out Statement will be rejected and the Valid Claim will be accepted. If you opt-out of the California Sub-Class, you should promptly consult an attorney if you wish to bring your own claim for monetary damages as the deadline for you to bring your own case may be affected by the statute of limitations.
|18.||When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the proposed Settlement?|
The Court will hold a fairness hearing to decide whether to approve the settlement. The fairness hearing is scheduled for December 20, 2017 at 10 a.m., before Judge Lawrence F. Stengel at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, in Courtroom 14B of the James A. Byrne United States Courthouse, 601 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At this hearing, the Court will consider whether the settlement is fair, reasonable and adequate. If there are objections or requests to be heard, the Court may consider them at the hearing. The Court may also decide the amount of attorneys’ fees and costs to be paid to Class Counsel. The date of the fairness hearing may change without further notice to the class. You should check back on this settlement website, or the U.S. Court’s Public Access website at PACER.gov to get the most current information concerning the date of the final approval hearing. To be heard at the hearing, you must include notice of your intent to present objections orally at the hearing with your written objection.
|19.||Do I have to come to the Fairness Hearing?|
No. Class Counsel will answer any questions the Court may have about the proposed Settlement, and the applications for attorneys’ fees, expenses, and case contribution awards. You and/or your counsel are welcome to attend the Fairness Hearing at your own expense, but you do not have to, even if you filed an objection. The Court will consider every timely filed objection even if the objectors are not present at the Fairness Hearing.
|20.||May I speak at the Fairness Hearing?|
If you are a Settlement Class Member and you file an objection to the proposed settlement or any of its terms before the deadline and in accordance with the instructions at Question 16, above, you and/or your counsel may ask the Court for permission to speak at the Fairness Hearing. To do so, you must state in your written objection that you intend to appear and would like to speak at the Fairness Hearing. See Question 16, above.
|21.||What happens if I do nothing at all?|
You do not have to take any action in order to participate as a member of the Settlement Class. However, any California Sub-Class Members who wish to receive their pro rata share of the California Settlement Fund must file a valid claim form by December 1, 2017.
|22.||Where can I get more details about the proposed Settlement?|
The Notice summarizes the proposed Settlement. The actual terms and conditions of the proposed Settlement are set forth in the Settlement Agreement dated July 3, 2017. You can get a copy of the Settlement Agreement, as well as copies of the Court’s Preliminary Approval Order and Plaintiffs’ Counsel’s applications for attorneys’ fees, expenses, and case contribution awards (after they are filed) at the “Court Documents” link on the Home page, or by writing to Class Counsel at the addresses listed in Question 14, above.
|23.||What if I have a question that was not answered here?|
Contact (855) 928-2272 or contact Class Counsel. See Question 14, above.