Duncan v. JPMorgan Chase Bank

Case # 14-cv-00912
Case Name Duncan v. JPMorgan Chase Bank
Jurisdiction US District Court for W.D. TX
Summary

Plaintiffs allege that Defendant, Chase Bank, regularly accessed their credit history through Experian, despite having no credit relationship.  Willfully doing so constitutes a violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Final Approval Date 06/20/2016
Result
  1. Final Approval granted.
  2. The Attorneys' Fee Request was reduced.
  3. Objectors Cox and Jabrani (through Attorney Bandas) appealed the Final Approval.
  4. All appeals were voluntarily dismissed.
Dismissal of Last Appeal 11/14/2016
Attachments Docket Report.pdf
Class Action Complaint.pdf
Preliminary Approval Order.pdf
Motion to Take Depositions of Objectors.pdf
Order Granting Motion to Take Depositions of Objectors.pdf
Plaintiff's Response to Objections.pdf
Supplement to Plaintiff's Response to Objections.pdf
Fairness Hearing Transcript.pdf
Final Judgment.pdf
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Objection of Donald Gors

Objectors Donald Gors
Signers Donald Gors
Attorneys Patrick Sweeney
Summary
  1. Attorneys' fees are excessive and not supported by the record.

NOTE:  This "pro se" objection was withdrawn when it became clear that Mr. Gors was not a class member.  Patrick Sweeney represented Mr. Gors, despite not filing an appearance and despite the objection being filed "pro se" (see Motion to Withdraw).

Attachments Objection of Donald Gors.pdf
Motion to Withdraw Gors Objection.pdf
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Objection of Thomas L. Cox Jr.

Objectors Thomas L. Cox Jr.
Signers Thomas L. Cox Jr.
Attorneys
Summary
  1. Attorneys' fees are excessive, while compensation to the class is insufficient.
  2. Injunctive relief is illusory.
  3. Cy pres provisions are improper.
  4. Confidential controls Defendant has over the settlement are improper.
  5. Settlement requires objectors to sign their objections and does not recognize mass opt-outs.

At his deposition, class counsel asked Objector Cox about his practice of settling objections:

"Q. And when you file an objection to a class action, have you always been paid something for the settlement?

A. Almost every time I settle when the terms are confidential.

Q. All right.  So you're not willing to divulge how much you were paid in those settlements?

A. Like I said, they were confidential and, no, I'm not willing to divulge it." (see Deposition Transcript, page 45).

Objector Cox motioned for attorneys' fees, alleging an improvement in the settlement of $1,167,677.  Despite this improvement, Objector Cox still appealed the Final Approval.  His request for fees was not ruled on by either the District or Appellate Court, though the District Court noted it "would deny the request for attorney's fees and expenses for the reasons stated by class counsel in their opposition to the motion. (see Order Finding Cox's Motion for Attorneys' Fees Moot, page 2; Response in Opposition to Cox Motion for Attorneys' Fees, generally)

Attachments Objection of Thomas L. Cox Jr.pdf
Cox Deposition Transcript.pdf
Cox Motion for Attorneys' Fees.pdf
Response in Opposition to Cox Motion for Attorneys' Fees.pdf
Appeal of Objector Cox.pdf
Order Finding Cox's Motion for Attorneys' Fees Moot.pdf
Amended Appeal of Objector Cox.pdf
Dismissal of Cox Appeal.pdf
Combined Appeal Docket.pdf
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Objection of Amirali Jabrani

Objectors Amirali Jabrani
Signers Amirali Jabrani
Attorneys Christopher A. Bandas
Peter C. Woods
Summary
  1. Settlement fund is inadequate, given the statutory value of the class claims.
  2. Administration costs are excessive.
  3. Attorneys' fees are excessive.
  4. Claims process is designed to depress the number of claimants.
  5. Injunctive relief is illusory.
  6. Cy pres provisions are improper.

Class counsel noted the following from their deposition of Objector Jabrani:

1. Mr. Jabrani admitted that Mr. Bandas’s office wholly drafted the objection
he filed, and that Mr. Jabrani simply signed it and mailed the objection to
the court and counsel. Appx. 2, Exh. “B”, p. 26:22 – p. 28:3.


2. Mr. Jabrani has never personally met Mr. Bandas. He first hired Mr.
Bandas when he saw an advertisement on Facebook seeking objectors to
the CertainTeed Fiber Cement Siding class action settlement. Id., p. 18:1-
21. Mr. Jabrani admitted that he has sent all but one of the class action
settlement notices he has received since then to Mr. Bandas, and that Mr.
Bandas has drafted objections for him to file pro se as to each such class
action settlement. Id., p.32:2 - 33:25.


3. Mr. Jabrani did not exclude himself from the settlement and pursue his
own claim against Chase because that “would cost money”, and having
Mr. Bandas file an objection does not cost Mr. Jabrani anything. Id.,
p.43:3 - 23.


4. Mr. Jabrani asserted that a $220 million settlement in this case would be
the minimum that should be considered adequate, and “that calls for just
$100 for doing all of the paperwork, meeting all the deadlines, going
through all the homework, and you get a lousy $100.” Id., p.61:25 -
62:22.


5. Mr. Jabrani could not identify a single benefit that his objections have
garnered for the classes in the cases in which he has filed objections, nor a
single improvement to the settlement terms that such objections have
fostered. Id., p.48:19 – 49:5; 54:15 – 25; 60:15. (see Supplement to Plaintiff's Response to Objections, page 3; Deposition Transcript, generally)

Attachments Objection of Amirali Jabrani.pdf
Jabrani Deposition Transcript.pdf
Jabrani Retainer Agreement.pdf
Jabrani Reply to Plaintiff's Response to Objections.pdf
Appeal of Objector Jabrani.pdf
Jabrani Request for Extension.pdf
Dismissal of Jabrani Appeal.pdf
Combined Appeal Docket.pdf
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