|Declaration of Beth E. Terrell in Support of Plaintiffs’ Motion for Attorneys’ Fees and Costs
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON
If you purchased a Refundable Individual Golf Membership at The Club at Snoqualmie Ridge and have not yet received a refund, your rights may be affected by this proposed class action settlement.
The Court authorized this notice. It is not a solicitation from a lawyer.
Your Legal Rights and Options in This Proposed Settlement
|Obtain A Refund
|If the Court approves the settlement, you may be entitled to an immediate refund of a portion of the initiation fees you paid The Club, depending on your place on the refund list. The settlement also sets a procedure for future refunds. See question 6 below.
|You may exclude yourself from the class. This is the only option that allows you to bring your own lawsuit about the issues being settled, but you won’t get the benefits of this settlement. See question 9 below.
|Object To The Settlement
|You may remain part of the class, but write to the Court to object to the proposed settlement. See question 10 below.
|Attend The Hearing
|You may ask to speak in Court about the fairness of the proposed settlement. See question 11 below.
|If you do nothing and the settlement is approved, you will give up the right to sue. See question 13 below.
- This notice explains these rights and options, and the deadlines to exercise them.
- The Court still has to decide whether to approve the settlement. Some refunds will be made
according to the terms of the settlement if the Court approves the settlement and after any
appeals are resolved. The settlement also prescribes terms and conditions for future refunds.
1. Why did I receive this notice?
You received this notice because The Club’s records show you bought a refundable individual golf membership and have not yet received a refund. The Court ordered this notice to be sent to you because you have a right to know about a proposed class action settlement that may affect you. This notice explains the lawsuit, the settlement, who is covered by the settlement, your rights and options, the benefits available under the settlement, and how to obtain them.
2. What is this lawsuit about?
This settlement arises from a class action lawsuit brought by Clyde Stephen Lewis, James Presti, and Michael Ralls (“Plaintiffs”), all of whom purchased refundable individual memberships but have not yet received a refund. Plaintiffs allege that in 2013, Defendants CF Arcis VI LLC, CF Arcis IV Holdings, LLC, and Arcis Equity Partners, LLC (“Arcis”), which bought the Club in 2013, improperly revised the Club’s June 30, 2008 Membership and Operating Policies, adversely affecting refund rights under those Policies and the Membership Agreements. Arcis acknowledges the Membership and Operating Policies were revised in 2013 by the prior owner of the Club, but denies the revisions were improper. Arcis also denies it committed any unlawful acts or violated any laws, and it contends it has made refunds consistent with the Policies.
The Court has not decided who is right and who is wrong.
3. Why is there a settlement?
This litigation has been pending since late 2017. In August 2018, the Court dismissed some of Plaintiffs’ claims, including their claim under the Washington Consumer Protection Act. Plaintiffs and their attorneys have now concluded that the settlement is in the best interests of the class because it provides a recovery now while avoiding the risk, expense, uncertainty, and delay of pursuing the case through trial and any appeals. Arcis decided to settle to avoid the further expense, inconvenience, and
risk of continued litigation.
4. Who is included in the settlement?
The settlement includes all persons who purchased refundable Individual Golf Memberships with the Club prior to preliminary approval of this settlement, as that membership is defined in the June 30, 2008 Membership and Operating Policies, but who have not yet received refunds.
5. What does the settlement provide?
If the Settlement is Approved:
- Arcis will make a total payment of $240,000. This money will be used to pay eight
immediate refunds, as explained below. It will also reimburse the lawyers for the class (“Class
Counsel”) for a portion of the fees and expenses incurred during litigation.
- From the money Arcis will pay under the settlement, Class Counsel will make immediate
refunds to eight class members. The amounts of the refunds and the method of designating
recipients of the refunds are described below.
- Arcis will make changes to how it calculates and pays refunds going forward. These
changes are intended to expedite the pace of refunds while protecting class members against
artificial reductions in the refund amount.
- Arcis will pay litigation costs, including the costs of giving notice to the class, administering
the settlement, and a Court-approved award of attorneys’ fees and expenses to Class Counsel
up to the amounts identified under question __ below.
6. How will refunds be made under the settlement?
Immediate refunds. If the Court approves the settlement, the money Arcis pays under the settlement will be used to pay eight refunds in the following amounts: (1) $24,375; (2) $23,875; (3) $23,375; (4) $22,875; (5) $22,375; (6) $21,875; (7) $21,375; and (8) $20,875. The first refund will be offered to the class member at the top of the refund list; if that member declines the refund, it will be offered to the
next person on the list, and so on, until an individual on the refund list accepts that first refund. The second through eighth refunds will be offered in turn in the same way, until all eight refunds have been
accepted. (By comparison, the current refund is $27,300, based on the $39,000 list price of refundable individual memberships.)
Future refunds. Arcis will provide future refunds as follows:
(a) As long as the Club has fewer than 420 active golf members, refunds will be 70% of the thencurrent price of a refundable membership. A refund will be made once the Club has collected cash from membership fees from the sale of both refundable and non-refundable memberships (not including any monthly dues or fees, or other Club charges) equal to three times the refund amount.
(b) After and as long as the Club has 420 or more active golf members, refunds will be 85% of the then-current price of a refundable membership. A refund will be made once the Club has collected cash from membership fees equal to 1.5 times the refund amount.
(c) Arcis agrees it will not sell refundable memberships at a price less than 150% of the then-current published price for nonrefundable memberships, thus protecting against artificial reduction of the
(d) Arcis will pay at least four refunds per year for each of the calendar years 2020, 2021, and 2022.
(e) Arcis will provide class members notice by email (or by U.S. Mail if email is not available) on a semi-annual basis detailing the net membership fees received and number and amount of refunds made
in the previous year. Arcis will provide this notice for seven years from June 20, 2019. Thereafter, Arcis will provide that information to class members on request.
7. Who are the attorneys representing the class and how will they be paid?
The Court has appointed the following attorneys and law firms to represent the class as legal counsel:
Adrienne D. McEntee
Beth E. Terrell
Terrell Marshall Law Group PLLC
936 N. 34th St., Ste. 300
Seattle, WA 98103
Telephone: (206) 816-6603
When they ask the Court to approve the settlement, Class Counsel will also apply to the Court for an award of attorneys’ fees and reimbursement of expenses in the amount of $59,000.
Since the beginning of this litigation in December 2017, Class Counsel has pursued the case on behalf of class members purely on a contingent basis and received no compensation for their services or reimbursement of their expenses. Class Counsel are requesting the $59,000 award to compensate them for time and expenses incurred.
8. What am I giving up if I stay in the class?
By staying in the class, you will give up any right you may have to pursue or be part of any other lawsuit against Arcis or its affiliates concerning the claim that Arcis unlawfully introduced nonrefundable memberships and materially limited the frequency with which members with refundable memberships could receive refunds without the required notice or membership approval. The legal claims you will release are described more fully in Paragraph 1.16 of the Settlement Agreement, which you can obtain from the Settlement Website, located at https://. If the Court approves the settlement,
you will also be bound by the Court’s orders in this case, including the final judgment, which will dismiss all claims asserted on behalf of the class and order the parties to implement the settlement.
If you wish to keep your right to sue over the matters involved in this lawsuit, you must exclude yourself from the class.
9. How can I exclude myself from the class and settlement?
If you wish to exclude yourself from the class and settlement, you must submit a written exclusion request. If you exclude yourself, you cannot obtain a refund under the settlement, you will not be bound by the final judgment, and you will retain the right to pursue your own lawsuit concerning the 2013 revisions to the Membership and Operating Policies or Arcis’s method of calculating and paying
refunds. To request exclusion, you must write a letter or postcard that lists your name, address, and telephone number, and clearly states that you wish to be excluded from the class and settlement in Lewis, et al. v. CF Arcis VII LLC d/b/a The Club at Snoqualmie Ridge et al., Case No. C17-01932 RSM. You must sign the letter or postcard and send it to Class Counsel at Terrell Marshall Law Group PLLC, 936 N.
34th St., Ste. 300, Seattle, WA 98103, postmarked by January 13, 2020, or, if delivered by a delivery service other than U.S. Mail, so that it is received no later than January 13, 2020.
10. How can I tell the Court what I think about the settlement?
Unless you exclude yourself as described under question 9, you remain a class member and may object to the settlement. You must submit any objections in writing. You must send the original of your objections to the Clerk of the Court and send copies to Class Counsel and Arcis’s counsel, at the following addresses, so that your objections are received no later than :
Clerk of the Court
United States District Court
Western District of Washington
700 Stewart Street, Suite 2310
Seattle, WA 98101
Adrienne D. McEntee
Beth E. Terrell
Terrell Marshall Law Group PLLC
936 N. 34th St., Ste. 300
Seattle, WA 98103
Telephone: (202) 816-6603
Stephen M. Rummage
Rebecca J. Francis
Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
920 Fifth Ave., Ste. 3300
Seattle, WA 98104
Telephone: (206) 757-8136
Your objections (a) must include a reference at the beginning to Lewis, et al. v. CF Arcis VII LLC d/b/a The Club at Snoqualmie Ridge et al., Case No. C17-01932 RSM; (b) must list your name, address, and
telephone number; (c) must be signed by you; and (d) must state your position and the reasons for your position. You must include copies of any documents you wish the Court to consider. If you do not present your views in writing in compliance with this procedure and deadline, your views will not be considered, and you will waive any objections you have.
As described below, the Court will hold a hearing to decide whether to approve the settlement. If you submit written objections or comments and wish to appear and speak at the hearing, your objections or
comments must include a statement that you intend to appear and speak at the fairness hearing, set forth the position you intend to present at the hearing, and include copies of any documents you wish
the Court to consider.
If you want your own lawyer to appear and speak at the hearing on your behalf, you must also state in your written objections or comments that you intend to have your lawyer appear and speak for you, and list the name, address, and telephone number of your lawyer.
11. When and where will the Court hold a hearing on the fairness of the settlement?
This lawsuit is pending before the Honorable Ricardo S. Martinez of the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington.On February 7, 2020, at 9:00 a.m., Judge Martinez will hold a hearing on the fairness of the settlement and whether it should be approved. The hearing will be held in Courtroom 13206 of the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington, 700 Stewart Street, Suite 2310, Seattle, WA 98101. At the hearing, Judge Martinez will also consider Class Counsel’s application for attorneys’ fees and expenses.
12. Do I have to come to the hearing? May I speak at the hearing?
You are not required to attend the hearing to have the Court consider your written objections. You or your lawyer may attend the hearing if you wish, at your own expense.
If you wish to speak at the hearing, you must submit written comments or objections, including a statement that you intend to appear and speak at the hearing, in compliance with the procedures and
deadline set forth under question 10 above.
13. What happens if I do nothing at all?
If the settlement is approved and you do nothing, you will still be part of the class, your legal claims will be released as described under question 8 above, and you will be prohibited from pursuing them.
14. How do I get more information?
This notice provides only a summary of information about the settlement. For more details, you may wish to review the Settlement Agreement and other documents, which you may obtain from the
Settlement Website, located at http://terrellmarshall.com/hartvsnoqualmieridgegolfclub/. The Settlement Agreement and all other pleadings and papers filed in the lawsuit are available for inspection and copying during regular business hours at the office of the Clerk of the Court, United States District Court for the Western District of Washington, 700 Stewart Street,
Suite 2310, Seattle, WA 98101.
You may contact Class Counsel to obtain information regarding your place on the Refund List. You may also obtain this information from the membership office at The Club at (425) 396-6003.
Arcis reported there are 387 active golf members as of December 2, 2019.
PLEASE DO NOT CONTACT THE COURT, THE CLUB, OR ARCIS
WITH QUESTIONS ABOUT THE SETTLEMENT.