Almost There: Motions Filed for NFLPA/Players Inc. Settlement
After what seems like an eternity, Manett Phelps & Phillips and McKool Smith filed Motions in the Parrish, Adderley, Roberts vs. the NFLPA/Players Inc. class action lawsuit late last week for final review and court approval on August 20, 2009 by Judge Alsup. The documents just became available online so we’ve loaded them up on DocStoc once again for easier viewing and searching. The main part of the Motion outlines the basics of the case and subsequent settlement. The Exhibits outline the payment plan and schedules with the first payment scheduled for July 13, 2009 (they’ll miss that one!) and the second set for June 5, 2010.
It’s always interesting digging into the details: Turns out the settlement will be managed and distributed by Garden City Group which just happens to be right here in Seattle. Half of the funds (around $13 million) were placed into escrow on July 13th, the day this Motion was apparently filed. And then barring no problems, the balance will be placed into escrow on June 5, 2010 for distribution shortly after that. Another interesting detail from Page 7 of Exhibit 1: Players who elected to Opt-Out John Baker, Richard Yelvington, Lynn Chandnois, John Demarie, Dan Goich, Daniel Direnzo, James “Scottie” Graham, Deacon Jones, Steve Largent, Brig Owens, Ben Pucci, Donald Testerman and Andre Collins were all excluded from suit.
(If you need to look at the GLA list of Players in the lawsuit click HERE.)
The proposed Distribution Plan is actually in Exhibit 2 (5 pages long). $1.7 million to cover costs and expenses will be coming off the top of the first half of the settlement to be paid this summer and the law firms will be receiving half of their 30% fee from each of the two payments. The juicy stuff on how and when players will get paid are in the last 2 pages of Exhibit 2. Here’s the key section that most of you will be interested in reading:
Plan Of Allocation Amongst Class Members
It is the judgment and contention of Class Counsel that the Class Members’ alleged damages stem from being denied participation in the royalties shared with active NFL players. Thus, in the judgment of Class Counsel, division of the payout would be most equitable if it mirrors the way in which Class Counsel understands, based upon the evidence in this case, that the active players received payments from the Gross Licensing Revenue pool for the years 2004 through 2007 that are included in the Class Period.2 It is Class Counsel’s understanding, based on the evidence, that the eligible active players received approximately twenty percent (20%) of the total licensing revenue during the class period in 2004; twenty four percent (24%) of the total licensing revenue during the class period in the second year (2005); twenty five percent (25%) of the total licensing revenue in the third year (2006); and thirty one percent (31%) of the total licensing revenue in the fourth year (2007). Class Counsel further understands, based on the evidence, that each year the amounts were divided equally among the eligible active NFL players for that year.
It is Class Counsel’s understanding that the number of retired players with a Gross Licensing Authorization (“GLA”) in effect per contract year are as follows:
It is Class Counsel’s understanding that the payments for years 2004-2007 relate to the GLA signing years of 2003-2006.2003 1,980 2004 1,425 2005 1,437 2006 1,207
Based upon these numbers and assuming the Court approves Class Counsel’s application for costs, expenses, and attorneys’ fees described above, Class Counsel have determined that to best match the distribution scheme enjoyed by active players, the Net Settlement Fund should be paid to Class Members in two amounts, as follows:
The initial amount for distribution to Class Members would be approximately $8 million, and would be distributed as follows:
For the 2003 GLA: Twenty percent (20%) of the amount or approximately $1.6 million would be paid to Class Members having a signed GLA in 2003. With 1,980 eligible Class Members, each would receive approximately $800.
For the 2004 GLA: Twenty four percent (24%) of the amount or approximately $1.9 million would be paid to Class Members having a signed GLA in 2004. With 1,425 eligible Class Members, each would receive approximately $1,300.
For the 2005 GLA: Twenty five percent (25%) of the amount or approximately $2 million would be paid to Class Members having a signed GLA in 2005. With 1,437 eligible Class Members, each would receive approximately $1400.
For the 2006 GLA: Thirty one percent (31%) of the amount or approximately $2.5 million would be paid to Class Members having a signed GLA in 2006. With 1,207 eligible Class Members, each would receive approximately $2,100.
Multiple years: If a Class Member has a signed GLA in more than one year, that person would receive payments for each of the years from the initial distribution. For example, if a Class Member signed a GLA in both 2003 and 2004, the Class Member would receive approximately $2100. As another example, a Class Member who signed a GLA for each of the years 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006, would receive a payment in the amount of approximately $5,600 from the initial distribution.
Payments from the second distribution would be handled in accordance with the same methodology as set forth above, after deduction of attorneys fees, additional costs of administration or taxes. A Class Member who signed a GLA for each of the years 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006, would receive a payment in the amount of approximately $6,300 from the second distribution. Accordingly, a Class Member who signed a GLA for each of the years in the class period would receive payment in the approximate total amount of $11,900.
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