In re Polyurethane Foam Antitrust Litigation
Overview of the Certification Class and Settlements
In re Polyurethane Foam Antitrust Litigation, Case No. 1:10-md-02196-JZ
The Court has certified a class in a lawsuit. In so doing, the Court has not ruled on the underlying merits of any of the claims or defenses made by either side in this case. Additionally, Plaintiffs in this class action reached two separate settlements. The first is with Defendant Leggett & Platt, Incorporated (“Leggett & Platt”), and the second is with Defendants Carpenter Co., E. R. Carpenter, L.P., and Carpenter Holdings, Inc. (collectively, “Carpenter”). The Settlements are not evidence of whether or not the Certification Class will ultimately be successful on its claims, or whether or not the Defendants have participated in the conspiracy alleged by Plaintiffs.
Direct purchasers of Flexible Polyurethane Foam allege that Defendants conspired to fix, raise, stabilize, or maintain the prices and allocate territories or customers of Flexible Polyurethane Foam, in violation of antitrust laws.
What Do The Settlements Provide?
The Leggett & Platt Settlement is between Plaintiffs and Leggett & Platt only. Plaintiffs and Leggett & Platt Settlement Class Members will release Leggett & Platt from all pending claims and in exchange, Leggett & Platt has agreed: (i) to pay $39,800,000 to a fund to compensate Leggett & Platt Settlement Class Members; and (ii) to provide limited cooperation to Plaintiffs.
The Carpenter Settlement is between Plaintiffs and Carpenter only. Plaintiffs and Carpenter Settlement Class Members will release Carpenter from all pending claims and in exchange, Carpenter has agreed: (i) to pay $108,000,000 to a fund to compensate Carpenter Settlement Class Members; and (ii) to provide limited cooperation to Plaintiffs.
Settlement funds may be reduced by court-ordered attorneys’ fees and reimbursement of litigation expenses, as approved by the Court. This may include administration of the Leggett & Platt Settlement and the Carpenter Settlement (collectively, “the Settlements”). The Certification Class, Leggett & Platt Settlement Class, and Carpenter Settlement Class are represented by William A. Isaacson of BOIES, SCHILLER & FLEXNER LLP and Stephen R. Neuwirth of QUINN EMANUEL URQUHART & SULLIVAN LLP. The motion by Class Counsel for attorneys’ fees and costs is available for viewing under the “Court Documents” section of this website and an incentive award for the Representative Plaintiffs will be available for viewing on this website after it is filed. If you wish to review the motion or additional details on how funds will be allocated, you may do so by visiting this “Court Documents” section of this website.
What Are My Options?
- TAKE NO ACTION - Certification Class: If you do nothing, and stay in the lawsuit, you will give up the right to sue the
Defendants with respect to claims asserted or which could have been asserted based on the same or similar facts alleged in this case, and you will be
bound by all orders the Court enters and any judgment reached in the case. If the Certification Class wins on its claims at trial or there is a
settlement, you might receive benefits, provided you comply with the procedures that are established for claiming these benefits.
The Settlements - You also will receive the non-monetary benefits of the Settlements. You will give up the right to sue Leggett & Platt and Carpenter with respect to the claims asserted or which could have been asserted based on the same or similar facts alleged in this case. However, you may be eligible to receive a payment from the Settlements if you submitted a timely Claim Form (the deadline to submit a claim was January 26, 2015).
- EXCLUDE YOURSELF - Certification Class: This is the only option that allows you to ever be part of any other lawsuit against
the non-settling Defendants with respect to the claims asserted in this case. If you exclude yourself from the Certification Class, you will no
longer be part of this lawsuit. If money or benefits are later awarded, you will receive none. Your written request should state that you want
to be excluded from the Certification Class in In re Polyurethane Foam Antitrust Litigation, and comply with the requirements explained in the
Long Form Notice available here.
The Settlements - This is the only option that allows you to ever be a part of any other lawsuit against Leggett & Platt or Carpenter with respect to the claims asserted in this case. If you exclude yourself from either or both of the proposed Settlement Classes, you will not become a member of the Settlement Class(es) from which you exclude yourself. Your written request should have specified the Settlement Class(es) from which you wished to be excluded, and complied with the requirements explained in the Long Form Notice available here, and have been postmarked by January 26, 2015.
- OBJECT TO THE LEGGETT & PLATT SETTLEMENT AND/OR THE CARPENTER SETTLEMENT - You may object to or otherwise comment on any term of the Settlements (including the request for attorneys’ fees) by filing an objection in writing with the Court. Your objection must comply with the requirements explained in the Long Form Notice available here.
The Court has scheduled a “Fairness Hearing” on February 3, 2015 at 10:00 a.m., at the following address: United States District Court, James M. Ashley and Thomas W. L. Ashley U.S. Courthouse, 1716 Spielbusch Avenue, Toledo, OH 43604.
The purpose of the Fairness Hearing is to determine whether the Settlements are fair, reasonable, and adequate, whether the Court should grant final approval of the Settlements, and whether the Court should enter a final Judgment of dismissal of the lawsuit as to Leggett & Platt and Carpenter with prejudice. The Court will also consider the motion for attorneys’ fees. You do not need to attend this hearing. You or your own lawyer may attend the hearing if you wish, at your own expense.
The Court has scheduled a trial date of March 31, 2015 for the case to proceed against the non-settling Defendants. You are not required to attend the trial. If you choose to do so, you have to attend the trial at your own expense. Class Counsel will present the case on behalf of the Certification Class. If the Certification Class obtains money or benefits as a result of the trial you will be notified. Please note that the Court may choose to change the dates and/or times of the trial. Please check this website for any updates.