ATTENTION CURRENT AND FORMER CALIFORNIA Farmers Agents
It is critical you submit your current email address and physical address so that we can communicate with you about the Settlement and how to Receive its Benefits.
The Preliminary Approval of the Settlement is scheduled for March 8, 2022
If preliminary approval is granted Class Members will receive Notice of the Settlement and will have one hundred (100) days from the date of Notice to submit claims.
February 22, 2022 - 2pm PST
San Jose/Milpitas California Agent Roadshow
February 23, 2022 - 9am PST
San Diego California Agent Roadshow
February 24, 2022 - 9am PST
Los Angeles/Glendale California Agent Roadshow
March 8, 2022
Preliminary Approval Hearing with Judge
February - March 2022
Notices go out to all class members with claim forms (agents need to immediately start making claims once the window is open). The class at this point will have only 100 days to file a claim. *
Estimated end of claims period *
Mid July 2022
Claims processing is over The court will set a final approval hearing sometime in the summer of 2022, possibly after all claims are in.*
Likely time claims are paid if final approval is granted with no objections.*
The plaintiffs and Farmers in the pending L.A. state court case have reached a settlement that resolves all claims on behalf of the previously certified class of California agents. The plaintiffs alleged that Farmers misclassified the class of California agents as independent contractors under California law; thus, Farmers violated the California Labor Code, which requires employers to reimburse their employees for any expenses they incur to do their job, and California Unfair Competition Law. The court granted the plaintiffs’ motion to have the case proceed as a class action in March of 2021. According to the Plaintiffs’ court filing, the settlement is designed to protect the agents’ classification as independent contractors and provide $75 million in monetary benefits, with $40 million in direct payments (net of attorney fees, service awards, and administrative costs) allocated to all participating class members without the need for any class member to make a claim, and $35 million in claims payments of up to $10,000 to each class member who submits a claim for certain unreimbursed expenses related to Farmers Smart Office program. The settlement also results in Farmers agreeing to specific business model and contract changes, including eliminating both the right to terminate the agent agreement without cause and the one-year post-termination non-solicitation provision. Plaintiffs’ court filing states that these systemic and contract changes will deliver at least an additional $15 million in value.
The court must approve all class action settlements. Accordingly, the plaintiffs have filed a motion asking the court to grant preliminary approval. The court has scheduled the hearing on preliminary approval for March 8, 2022. If the court grants preliminary approval, then notice will be sent to all potential class members informing them of their rights, the benefits of the settlement, how to submit a claim, and the date the court sets for the final approval hearing.
Copies of the Plaintiffs’ court filings asking for preliminary approval are available here, along with a copy of the settlement agreement.
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