Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why did I receive a notice?
  2. What is this Settlement about?
  3. What does the Settlement provide?
  4. How will the “Net Settlement Fund be used to compensate Class Members?
  5. How do I qualify?
  6. What if I don’t submit a timely claim?
  7. How is my Pro Rata Share calculated?
  8. How is the size of my Pro Rata Share determined?
  9. What if I have moved out of St. Clair Shores? Can I still file a claim?
  10. Can I exclude myself?
  11. Am I bound to the terms of the proposed settlement if I remain a class member?
  12. When is the Settlement Hearing?
  13. How do I obtain more information?
  1. Why did I receive a notice?

    You paid the City of St. Clair Shores for stormwater disposal service at any time between August 15, 2011 and February 29, 2020 and are a member of the Class. 

     

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  2. What is this Settlement about?

    A proposed Settlement in the amount of $3,483,882.95 has been reached with the City in a class action lawsuit pending in Macomb County Circuit Court titled Patrick v. City of St. Clair Shores, Case No. 17-003018-CZ, presiding Judge Jennifer Faunce (the “Lawsuit”), challenging stormwater service charges the City imposes upon owners of real property. For settlement purposes, the parties have agreed that the Class will consist of all persons or entities who/which paid or incurred the Stormwater Charges between August 15, 2011 and February 29, 2020 (the “Class”).  This Agreement is intended to settle all of the claims of the Class.

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  3. What does the Settlement provide?

    For the purposes of the proposed Settlement, the City expressly denies any and all allegations that it acted improperly, but, to avoid litigation costs, the City has agreed to create a settlement fund in the aggregate amount of Three Million Four Hundred Eighty Three Thousand Eight Hundred Eighty-Two Dollars and Ninety-Five Cents ($3,483,882.95) for the benefit of the Class (the “Settlement Amount”).  The Settlement Amount will be utilized, with Court approval, to pay refunds or provide credits to the Class, and to pay Class Counsel an award of attorneys’ fees, the total amount of which shall not exceed 33% of the Settlement Amount, and expenses for the conduct of the litigation.

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  4. How will the “Net Settlement Fund be used to compensate Class Members?

    Each Class Member’s share in the Net Settlement Fund shall be referred to herein as his, her or its “Pro Rata Share,” and each Class Member’s Pro Rata Share of the Net Settlement Fund will be distributed via a refund payment or credit.

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  5. How do I qualify?

    To qualify to receive a distribution of cash via check (a “Payment”) from the Net Settlement Fund, Class Members are required to submit sworn claims (the “Claims”) which identify their names, addresses, and the periods of time in which they paid the Stormwater Charges in order to participate in the Settlement.  Class Members who submit Claims will hereafter be referred to as the “Claiming Class Members.” The Claiming Class Members are required to submit those claims no later than July 27, 2020, as described in Paragraph 25 of the Settlement Agreement (the “Claims Period”). In order for a claim to be deemed timely, the Claims-Escrow administrator must receive the claim form on or before July 27, 2020.

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  6. What if I don’t submit a timely claim?

    Class members who do not submit a timely claim but who/which are current water and sewer customers of the City will receive a credit against future water and sewer charges in the amount of their Pro Rata Share of the Net Settlement Fund. 

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  7. How is my Pro Rata Share calculated?

    The size of each Class Member’s Pro Rata Share shall be determined by: (1) calculating the total amount of Stormwater Charges the Class Member paid during the Class Period and then (2) dividing that number by the total amount of Stormwater Charges the City collected from Class Members during the Class Period and then (3) multiplying that fraction by the amount of the Net Settlement Fund.

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  8. How is the size of my Pro Rata Share determined?

    The size of each Class Member’s Pro Rata Share shall be determined by: (1) calculating the total amount of Stormwater Charges the Class Member paid during the Class Period and then (2) dividing that number by the total amount of Stormwater Charges the City collected from Class Members during the Class Period and then (3) multiplying that fraction by the amount of the Net Settlement Fund.

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  9. What if I have moved out of St. Clair Shores? Can I still file a claim?

    Yes; please call us at 888-729-5724 so we can obtain your information and mail a claim form to you. 

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  10. Can I exclude myself?

    Class Members who wish to exclude themselves from the Settlement may write to the Administrator, stating that they do not wish to participate in the Settlement and that they wish to retain their right to file an action against the City.  This proposed Settlement should not be interpreted, in any way, as suggesting that the claims alleged against the City have legal or factual merit.  The City has challenged the validity of Plaintiff’s claims. This request for exclusion must be received by the Claims-Escrow Administrator no later than July 27, 2020 and mailed to:

     Patrick v. City of St. Clair Shores Settlement Administrator

    P.O. Box 43434

     Providence, RI 02940-3434

     

    or emailed to admin@StClairShoresStormwaterSettlement.com.

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  11. Am I bound to the terms of the proposed settlement if I remain a class member?

    By remaining a Class Member, you will be bound by the terms of the proposed Settlement and will be barred from bringing a separate action against the City for the claims asserted in the Lawsuit at your own expense through your own attorney. You will, however, receive your Pro Rata Share of the Net Settlement Fund via a Refund or Credit.  Again, however, where a Class Member does not have a water and sewer billing account, it will not be possible for the City to apply any credit.  The only way for Class Members without water and sewer billing accounts to receive a portion of the Net Settlement Fund is for them to file Claims.

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  12. When is the Settlement Hearing?

    Pursuant to the Order of the Court dated May 29, 2020, a Settlement Hearing will be held in the Macomb County Circuit Court, 40 N. Main Street, Mt. Clemens, MI 48043 at 8:30 a.m. on August 31, 2020, to determine whether the proposed Settlement as set forth in the Settlement Agreement dated May 11, 2020, is fair, reasonable, and adequate and should be approved by the Court, whether the Lawsuit should be dismissed pursuant to the Settlement, whether counsel for Plaintiff and the Class should be awarded fees and expenses, and whether the Class Representative should receive an incentive award. At the Settlement Hearing, any member of the Class may appear in person or through counsel and be heard to the extent allowed by the Court in support of, or in opposition to, the fairness, reasonableness and adequacy of the proposed Settlement.  However, no Class Member will be heard in opposition to the proposed Settlement and no papers or briefs submitted by any such Class Member will be accepted or considered by the Court unless on or before July 27, 2020, such Class Member serves by first class mail written objections that set forth the name of this matter as defined in the Notice, the objector’s full name, address and telephone number, an explanation of the basis upon which the objector claims to be a Class Member, all grounds for the objection including any known legal support for the objection, the number of times which the objector has objected to a class action settlement in the past five years and a caption of each case in which an objection was filed, the identity of all counsel representing the objector at the hearing, a statement confirming whether the objector intends to appear and/or testify at the hearing (along with a disclosure of all testifying witnesses) and the signature of the objector (not just the objector’s attorney) upon each of the following attorneys:

     

    Gregory D. Hanley

    Kickham Hanley PLLC

    32121 Woodward Ave., Suite 300

    Royal Oak, MI 48073

    Counsel for Plaintiff

     

    Ronald A. King

    Clark Hill PLC

    212 E Grand River Ave

    Lansing, MI 48906

    Counsel for Defendant

     

    and has filed said notice, objections, papers and briefs, as to the settlement with the Clerk of the Macomb County Circuit Court. Any Class Member who does not make and serve written objections in the manner provided above shall be deemed to have waived such objections and shall be forever foreclosed from making any objections (by appeal or otherwise) to the proposed Settlement.

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  13. How do I obtain more information?

    For a more detailed statement of the matters involved in the Lawsuit, including the terms of the proposed Settlement, you are referred to papers on file in the Lawsuit, which may be inspected during regular business hours at the Office of the Clerk of Circuit Court for Macomb County, Michigan. You may also view the Settlement Agreement and other important court documents at StClairShoresStormwaterSettlement.com and kickhamhanley.com. Should you have any questions with respect to this Notice of the proposed Settlement of the Lawsuit generally, you should raise them with your own attorney or direct them to counsel for the Class, IN WRITING OR BY EMAIL TO ADMIN@STCLAIRSHORESSTORMWATERSETTLEMENT.COM, identified as Attorneys for Plaintiffs, above. DO NOT CONTACT THE COURT, THE CLERK OF THE COURT, THE DEFENDANT OR THE ATTORNEYS FOR DEFENDANT.

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