The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable David R. Herndon Chief Judge United States District Court
FINAL ORDER APPROVING CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT
This matter came on for hearing on January 16, 2009, upon the application of the Parties for approval of the settlement set forth in the Class Settlement Agreement ("Agreement") dated as of October 15, 2008. Due and adequate notice having been given to the Class, and the Court having considered the Agreement, all papers filed and proceedings had herein and all oral and written comments received regarding the proposed settlement, and having reviewed the record in this Litigation, and good cause appearing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND DECREED AS FOLLOWS:
1. On October 23, 2008, this Court preliminarily approved the Class Settlement Agreement reached between Plaintiff Robert Carpenter and Defendants Persolve LLC, Law Offices of Deborah S. Ashen, Ltd., and Deborah S. Ashen, ("Defendants") for the claims alleged in the above-captioned matter. The Court approved notices for mailing to the class. The Court is informed that actual notice was sent by first-class mail to 72 class members (counting couples and other joint persons as a single class member). A total of 13 envelopes were returned by the United States Postal Service marked not deliverable with no forwarding addresses available, and 2 envelopes were returned and re-mailed to a forwarding address. No class members requested exclusion and no objections were filed or received. No class members requested vacations of the judgments entered against them and none requested refund of the money collected in connection with the contracts sued on.
2. The Court, for purposes of this Final Judgment and Order of Dismissal (the "Judgment"), adopts all defined terms as set forth in the Class Settlement Agreement.
3. The Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of the Litigation, the Plaintiff and Class Representative, the other Members of the Class, and the Defendants.
4. The Court finds that the distribution of the Notices of Class Action Settlement as provided for in the Preliminary Approval Order constituted the best notice practicable under the circumstances to all Persons within the definition of the Class, and fully met the requirements of Illinois law and due process under the United States Constitution.
5. The Court approves the settlement of the above-captioned actions, as set forth in the Agreement, each of the releases and other terms, as fair, just, reasonable and adequate as to the Parties. The Parties are directed to perform in accordance with the terms set forth in the Agreement.
6. Except as to any individual claim of those Persons who have validly and timely requested exclusion from the Class, all of the Released Claims are dismissed without prejudice as to the Plaintiffs and Class Representatives and the other Members of the Class, and as against the Released Parties. The Parties are to bear their own costs, except as otherwise provided in the Agreement.
7. Solely for purposes of effectuating this settlement this Court has certified a Class of all Persons who satisfy the following criteria. The Class is defined to include:
All natural persons living outside Cook, DuPage, Will, Kane, Lake, and McHenry counties against whom a lawsuit was filed in Cook County by the Law Offices of Deborah S. Ashen, Ltd. on behalf of Persolve LLC between September 4, 2006 and September 24, 2007.
8. With respect to the Class and for settlement purposes only, this Court finds and concludes that:
(a) the Members of the Class are ascertainable and so numerous that joinder of all members is impracticable;
(b) there are questions of law or fact common to the Class, and there is a well-defined community of interest among Members of the Class with respect to the subject matter of the Litigation;
(c) the claims of the Plaintiffs and Class Representatives are typical of the claims of ...