Parker v. City of New York

www.ParkerSettlement.com


Frequently Asked Questions

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1. Who are the parties to the Settlement?

There are seven named plaintiffs in this case. All of them were pre-trial detainees when they served Old Time in a DOC facility. They are called Class Representatives because they brought this lawsuit on their own behalf and on behalf of other pre-trial detainees. The Defendant is the City of New York. The parties have agreed to resolve this case through this Settlement.

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2. What happened in Court?

The parties have filed a Stipulation of Settlement on August 23, 2017 and the Court conditionally approved it on December 11, 2017. The Court will hold the Fairness Hearing on September 10, 2018 at 10:00a.m. At the Fairness Hearing, the Court will consider whether the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate.

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3. How do I know if I am part of the Settlement?

Everyone who meets the following description is a Class Member: any person held in a DOC facility between November 23, 2012 and September 16, 2015 who, while a pre-trial detainee, served Old Time (as defined below in Question 5).

To receive damages as part of the Settlement, you must have been a pre-trial detainee when you served Old Time. This Settlement does not provide compensation to (i) persons who served Old Time while they were in DOC custody due to an alleged or adjudicated parole violation or (ii) New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision prisoners (or convicted prisoners from other jurisdictions) who were in DOC custody temporarily for purposes of court appearances or pursuant to warrants relating to convictions or as of the date of conviction by verdict or plea.

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4. What is the “Old Time” Practice?

The “Old Time” practice at issue in this case is the former DOC practice that when a person housed in a DOC facility was given a so-called “ticket” and found to have violated a disciplinary rule, was sentenced to placement in PSEG (also known as the “bing”) for a period of time as a result of that violation, and was released from DOC custody prior to completing that PSEG sentence, and then at some later date that person was readmitted to a DOC facility, and while that person was a pre-trial detainee, he or she was placed in PSEG to finish the sentence imposed for the disciplinary violation committed during the prior detention.

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5. What should I do if I think I am a Class Member but I have not received a Claim Form?

The Administrator has mailed letters and a Claim Form to everyone whom the City and Class Counsel believe is a class member. It is possible that you are a Class Member even if you did not receive a Claim Form. If you believe you are a Class Member but did not receive a letter with a Claim Form in it, you may request to be included in the Settlement and for a Claim Form. To request that you be included in the Settlement and to obtain a Claim Form, go to www.parkersettlement.com or contact the administrator at the address or phone # below. Include your name, date of birth, address, NYSID # (if known), phone # (if any), the dates you believe you served Old Time and the DOC facility in which you served Old Time, and any other information you believe will assist in confirming that you in fact served “old” or “owed” or “historic” time. The deadline for submitting this information is March 26, 2018. The Administrator and the Parties will seek to determine if you are a Class Member and should be included in the Settlement and will notify you of their determination.

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6. What does the Settlement provide?

The Settlement provides for Class Members to receive compensation as follows:

  1. Class Members will receive $175 for each day that they served Old Time if they were neither under the age of 18 years old nor classified by the City as having a serious mental illness.
  2. Class Members will receive $200 for each day that they served Old Time if they were under the age of 18 years old or were classified by the City as having a serious mental illness when they served Old Time.

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7. What do I need to do in order to get payment?

To receive a payment, you need to do three things:

First, you MUST mail in a signed and completed Claim Form postmarked by no later than March 26, 2018, to the address below:

Parker et al. v. City of New York
c/o GCG, Administrator
PO Box 10461
Dublin, OH 43017-4061

You can also get a Claim Form here; calling (866) 815-6547 or (212) 620-2600 or writing to the above address.

Second, you MUST satisfy the Proof of Identity requirement.You can do this by submitting a Claim Form that has been notarized by a notary public. If you submit a notarized Claim Form, you do not need to submit any identification.

If you are incarcerated when you complete your Claim Form, you must have it notarized at the prison or jail law library (or by some other available licensed Notary Public), in which case you will not be required to submit additional identification in order to be eligible for payment.

If you submit a Claim Form that has not been notarized, then you must satisfy the Proof of Identification requirement. In order to satisfy the Proof of Identification requirement, you must submit (either with your Claim Form or separately at a later time) a copy of any of the following: (a) electric, gas, water, telephone, cable, or other utility bill/s in your name; (b) a lease in your name; (c) a driver’s license or other government-issued identification (such as a IDNYC card); (d) a passport or visa; (e) a green card or other identification issued by the Immigration and Naturalization Service or the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement; or (f) other documentation that reliably establishes your identity. If the documents you submit to prove identity are not deemed sufficient, you may be determined not to qualify for the damages payment, in which case you will be notified of that determination and given an opportunity to submit further proof of identity before the deadline expires.

Proof of Identity is not due until 180 days after the Court approves the Settlement, but you should submit it as soon as possible because your check will not be mailed to you until you have satisfied this requirement.

Third, you must fill out and submit a W-9 form no later than March 9, 2019. Even if you have filed a Claim Form and satisfied the Proof of Identity Requirement, the City of New York will not issue a payment to you unless you have filled out and submitted this form. You may submit your W-9 Form with your Claim Form or at a later date, but if you submit it after March 9, 2019, you will lose any rights to receive payment.

If possible, you should keep copies or photos of anything you send and proof of when you sent it.

Please note that you should inform Class Counsel or the Administrator if your address changes so that your check is mailed to the right address.

No payments will be sent until the Court approves the Settlement. Even then, there may be appeals. It is uncertain how many appeals there may be, if any, and how long it may take to resolve them. Please be patient.

If you have any questions regarding completing the Claim Form, providing Proof of Identity, or completing the W-9 form, you may contact Class Counsel at (212) 620-2600 or the Administrator at (866) 815-6547.

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8. What am I giving up to get a payment or stay in the Class?

Unless you exclude yourself from this Settlement (see Question 10 below), you cannot sue the City or be part of any other lawsuit against the City, NYCDOC, or their employees relating to serving Old Time. Unless you exclude yourself, it also means that all of the decisions by the Court will bind you. But you are not giving up your right to sue the City for things that are not related to the “old” or “owed” or “historic” time practice that is covered by this Settlement.

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9. How do I get out of the Settlement?

If you don’t want a payment from the Settlement, and you want to keep the right to sue or continue to sue the City, DOC, or their employees on your own about the legal issues in this case, then you must take steps to get out. This is called “excluding yourself,” or is sometimes referred to as “opting out” of the Class. To exclude yourself, you must send a letter that includes the following: (a) your name, date of birth, address and telephone number (if any); (b) a statement saying that you want to be excluded from the Settlement; and (c) your signature. You must mail your exclusion request, postmarked no later than March 26, 2018, to:

Parker et al. v. City of New York
c/o GCG, Administrator
PO Box 10461
Dublin, OH 43017-4061

An Opt-Out Form is included here or can be requested from the Administrator or Class Counsel. You will get no payments from the Settlement if you exclude yourself. If possible, you should keep copies or photos of anything you send and proof of when you sent it.

If you do not exclude yourself (“opt out”) and you also fail to submit a Claim Form, a W-9 Form, and satisfy the Proof of Identity requirement, then you will not receive any payment under this Settlement, nor will you be able to file your own lawsuit relating to the issues covered by the Settlement.

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10. Do I have a lawyer in this case? How will the lawyers be paid?

The Court has designated Cuti Hecker Wang LLP and Alexander A. Reinert, Esq. as Class Counsel in this case. Class Counsel will represent you and other Class Members. You will not be required to pay anything to these lawyers. Class Counsel will ask the Court to award them reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs, which will be paid to them by the City, after the Settlement has been approved. The amount that you are entitled to receive under this Settlement will not be affected by the amount that the City is ordered to pay Class Counsel.

If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, you may hire one at your own expense.

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11. How do I tell the Court that I don’t like the Settlement?

If you are a Class Member and do not exclude yourself from the Settlement, you can object to the Settlement if you do not like any part of it. You can tell the Court why you think the Settlement should not be approved. To object, you must send a letter that includes the following: (a) your name, date of birth, address, and telephone number (if any); (b) a statement saying you object to the Settlement in Parker v. The City of New York, 15 Civ. 6733; (c) the reasons you object; (d) whether you want to speak at the fairness hearing (see Question 13 below); and (e) your signature. You must mail your objection, postmarked no later than March 26, 2018, to (a) the Clerk of Court, United States District Court, Eastern District of New York, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York 11201; and (b) Parker et al. v. City of New York, c/o GCG, Administrator, PO Box 10461, Dublin, OH 43017-4061

If possible, you should keep copies or photos of anything you send and proof of when you sent it.

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12. When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the Settlement?

The Court will have a fairness hearing to decide whether to approve the Settlement on September 10, 2018 at 10 a.m. before Hon. Cheryl L. Pollak at the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, located at 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York 11201 in Courtroom 13B. The hearing may be moved to a different date or time without additional notice, so it is a good idea to regularly check this website. You do not have to come to the hearing. If you want to speak at the hearing, you must request to do so when you file an objection (see Question 10 above).

At this hearing, the Court will consider whether the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate. If there are objections, the Court will consider them at the hearing. After the hearing, the Court will decide whether to approve the Settlement. We do not know how long this decision will take.

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13. What happens if I do nothing at all?

If you do nothing, you will not get any payment. Unless you exclude yourself (“opt out”), you won’t be able to start a lawsuit, continue with a lawsuit, or be part of any other lawsuit against the City, DOC, or their employees or any other person or entity relating to Old Time.

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14. How do I get more information?

If you would like additional information, you can contact either the Administrator or Class Counsel as follows:

To contact the Administrator, the Garden City Group, you can call (866) 815-6547; write to:

Parker et al. v. City of New York
c/o GCG, Administrator
PO Box 10461
Dublin, OH 43017-4061

To contact Class Counsel, you can call (212) 620-2600 , Email oldtime@chwllp.com, or write to:

Cuti Hecker Wang LLP, 305
Broadway, Suite 607, New York, NY 10007

You can obtain detailed information about the case by examining the court file located at 225 Cadman Plaza East in Brooklyn, New York.

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