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Busch v. Bluestem Brands, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Minnesota

October 11, 2019

Elizabeth Busch, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated, Plaintiff,
v.
Bluestem Brands, Inc., d/b/a Fingerhut, Defendant.

          ORDER GRANTING FINAL APPROVAL OF CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT

          Wilhelmina M. Wright United States District Judge

         This matter is before the Court on the Plaintiff Elizabeth Busch's unopposed motions for approval of requested attorneys' fees, costs, and incentive award and final approval of the Parties' class action settlement. (Dkts. 95, 100.) On October 8, 2019, the Court held a Final Approval Hearing to determine whether the proposed Class Action Settlement Agreement (Settlement Agreement) should be finally approved as fair, reasonable, and adequate. The Court has considered all the submissions and arguments of the Parties. For the reasons addressed below, pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23, and in accordance with the terms of the Settlement Agreement, the Court finds good cause to grant Plaintiff's motions and issue final judgment in this case.

         NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:

         1. Unless otherwise defined, all capitalized terms in this Order shall have the same meaning as they do in the Settlement Agreement.

         2. The Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of the Action and over the Parties, including all Settlement Class Members with respect to the Settlement Class certified for settlement purposes in this Court's Preliminary Approval Order, as follows:

All persons in the United States who were sent a text message to a cellular telephone from or on behalf of Bluestem and where the number was coded by Bluestem as a “wrong party” on an outbound call, during the Class Period (i.e., March 14, 2012, through October 15, 2018).

         3. The Court finds that the Settlement Agreement was negotiated at arm's length by experienced counsel who were fully informed of the facts and circumstances of the Action and of the strengths and weaknesses of their respective positions. Further, settlement occurred only after the Parties negotiated over a period of many months. Counsel for the Parties were therefore well positioned to evaluate the benefits of the Settlement Agreement, taking into account the expense, risk, and uncertainty of protracted litigation with respect to numerous difficult questions of fact and law.

         4. The Court finally certifies the Settlement Class for settlement purposes and finds, for settlement purposes, that the Action satisfies all the requirements of Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Specifically, the Court finds that (a) the number of Settlement Class Members is so numerous that joinder of all members thereof is impracticable; (b) there are questions of law and fact common to the Settlement Class; (c) the claims of the Plaintiff are typical of the claims of the Settlement Class she seeks to represent; (d) Plaintiff has and will continue to fairly and adequately represent the interests of the Settlement Class for purposes of entering into the Settlement Agreement; (e) the questions of law and fact common to the Settlement Class Members predominate over any questions affecting any individual Settlement Class Member; (f) the Settlement Class is ascertainable; and (g) a class action settlement is superior to the other available methods for the fair and efficient adjudication of the controversy.

         5. The Court finally appoints the following attorneys as Class Counsel for the Settlement Class:

Ronald A. Marron Alexis M. Wood Kas L. Gallucci Law Offices of Ronald A. Marron 651 Arroyo Drive San Diego, CA 92103 Telephone: (619) 696-9006 ron@consumersadvocates.com alexis@consumersadvocates.com kas@consumersadvocates.com
Thomas J. Lyons, Jr. (#0249646) Consumer Justice Center, P.A. 367 Commerce Court Vadnais Heights, Minnesota 55127 Telephone: (651) 770-9707 Facsimile: (651) 704-0907 tommy@consumerjusticecenter.com

         6. The Court finally confirms and designates Plaintiff Elizabeth Busch as the Class Representative.

         7. The Court makes the following findings and conclusions regarding notice to the Settlement Class:

a. The Class Notice was disseminated to persons in the Settlement Class in accordance with the terms of the Settlement Agreement, and the Class Notice and its dissemination were in compliance with ...

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