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Guidance on Filing Notices of Proposed Class Action Settlements

The Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 28 U.S.C. § 1711 et seq., requires notification to appropriate federal and state officials of proposed class action settlements and sufficient time for those officials to comment before a settlement is finalized. Within ten days of the filing of a proposed settlement, each participating defendant must serve notice of the proposed settlement on the appropriate federal and state officials.

New York State Department of Financial Services ("DFS") is the appropriate state official if DFS is a defendant's primary state regulator or supervisor, or if DFS licenses or otherwise authorizes a defendant. DFS is also the appropriate state official if the defendant is a New York State chartered depository institution.

Notice of the proposed settlement consists of copies of: (1) the complaint; (2) notice of any scheduled hearing; (3) any proposed or final notification to class members of their right to opt out or the absence of such a right; (4) any proposed or final class action settlement; (5) any settlements or agreements between class counsel and counsel for defendants; (6) any final judgment or notice of dismissal; (7) to the extent possible, the names of class members residing in each state and the estimated proportionate share of the claims of such members to the entire settlement; and (8) any relevant judicial opinions. A federal court may not enter final approval of the proposed settlement earlier than 90 days after the last date of service on a governmental official.

All institutions overseen by the DFS should establish procedures to ensure that counsel representing them in class action litigation are aware of their responsibility under the Class Action Fairness Act to notify DFS.

Notices should be sent to:

Department of Financial Services
Class Action Notice
One State Street, 19th Floor
New York, New York 10004

Inquiries may be submitted by email at cafa@dfs.ny.gov or by telephone at (212) 709-3500.

 

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