(Greeneville, TN) All payments to class members in the Southeast Milk Litigation (SEML) will be final this fall with the completion of up to two additional payments from different settlements in the historic Class Action.
One of those payments will complete the cycle of payments in the Dean Foods portion of the Settlement. Individual recipients should expect to receive an amount similar to the previous Dean payments.
“Almost unbelievably, there are some uncashed checks from previous payments which need to be cleared before those payments can be finalized,” says John Harrison, Class Representative for the plaintiffs.
“Those uncashed checks must be accounted for or reconciled before final payments can be made, since everything must zero out before final closure of the Settlement accounts.”
Letters, some containing reissued checks, have been sent to the owners-of-record of those uncashed checks, with a reminder that those checks must be deposited within 30 days of check issue (approximately, by the third week of August).
ANY QUESTIONS? Act Immediately! If anyone believes that they fall into this category of ‘uncashed checks,’ or if anyone believes they are due a payment which they have not received in previous cycles, they are asked to immediately contact the Attorneys-of-Record of each of the Litigation subclasses as follows:
Independent producers, as well as all other producers belonging to co-ops other than DFA, should contact Baker-Hostetler, by phone at 202- 861-1500, or via mail at:
Southeast Milk Litigation
Baker & Hostetler LLP
Attn: Robert Abrams, Greg Commins, or Danyll Foix
1050 Connecticut Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20036
DFA producers should contact Brewer & Terry, by phone at 423-587-2730, or via mail at
Southeast Milk Litigation
Brewer & Terry, P.C Attn: Steve Terry or Gary Brewer
1702 W. Andrew Johnson Hwy
Morristown, TN 37816
The Dean Foods Settlement, a total of $140 Million dollars to be paid over five scheduled payments, was final in June of 2012, with four of those payments already paid to class members. This fall’s payment will be the last.
The second expected payment, much smaller, will reflect the final apportionment of the Dairy Farmers of America and Related Entities Settlement, which received final approval by the Court in May of 2013. The initial $140 Million Settlement phase was paid out in one lump sum at the end of December, 2013, and was prorated to individual class members according to production in defined time frames. This fall’s payments will distribute any remaining funds.
All activity in this case was conducted following Federal Class Action laws and directives, and all procedures took place accordingly, under the supervision of the Court. Judge Ronnie Greer presided over the case.
The amounts of the total Settlement in this case, which totaled in excess of $280 million dollars, set a record in the US Federal Court, Tennessee, Eastern District of Tennessee, and is one of the highest ever reached in dairy or food industry history in the United States. Terms of each of the Settlements state that none of the defendants admitted guilt.
For court documents and more information on the litigation, please refer to www.southeastdairyclass.com. In addition, various articles are posted at www.milkshedsblog.com, or please google search “Southeast Milk Litigation.”