12/27/2011 // San Francisco, CA, USA // Jacobs Kolton, Chtd. and Keller Grover LLP // John G. Jacobs and Jeffrey KellerSan Francisco, CA (Press Release) – In November, 2010, Chicago and San Francisco consumer attorneys Jacobs Kolton, Chtd. and Keller Grover LLP reached a nationwide class action settlement with Payless ShoeSource, Inc. over Payless’s practice of sending text message advertisements to consumers in alleged violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). The class action settlement was given preliminary approval by United States District Court Judge Edward M. Chen, of the Northern District of California on September 6, 2011.
Under the terms of the settlement and the preliminary approval order, class members still have until February 6, 2012 to file their claim forms and participate in the settlement. Class members include all persons who received one or more SMS text message from Payless ShoeSource, Inc., from October 29, 2005 through October 4, 2010. After filing a claim form, eligible class members will receive a fully transferable $25 merchandise certificate good at any Payless ShoeSource Store in the United States. Claim forms can be found at www.paylesstextsettlement.com and can be submitted online at https://www.paylesstextsettlement.com/claim/ .
The settlement provides for the payment by Payless of up to $6 million in merchandise certificates. If class members claim less than $5 million in merchandise certificates, or redeem less than that amount within a year of final approval of the settlement, the unused or unclaimed amounts will be donated, also in the form of merchandise certificates, to a court-approved charity. Under the settlement, Payless must also take significant remedial steps to ensure that it will comply with the TCPA in the future, including new procedures whereby it will send text messages only to customers who specifically request them via a double opt-in system.
The settlement does not include any determination of liability and Payless continues to maintain that its former text message program was legal and appropriate.
The class action lawsuit was filed on October 29, 2009 after plaintiff Mohammad Kazemi received cell phone text message advertisements from Payless. Before receiving the last text message advertisement, Dr.. Kazemi, whose cell phone number is registered on the National Do Not Call Registry, contacted Payless and requested that they take his phone number off of their text message marketing list and stop sending him text messages. Upon receiving another text message thereafter, Dr. Kazemi filed suit to stop the practice.
Additional information about the lawsuit and the settlement, including the settlement agreement itself and the Notice of Settlement for all class members, can be found at www.paylesstextsettlement.com.
John G. Jacobs
Bryan G. Kolton
Jacobs Kolton, Chtd.
122 South Michigan Ave, Suite 1850
Chicago, Illinois 60603
(312) 427-4000 Jeffrey F. Keller
Keller Grover LLP
1965 Market Street
San Francisco, California 94103
Case No. 3:09-CV-05142-EMC (US District Court for the Northern District of California)