Mitchell v. LSI Title Agency, Inc
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Frequently Asked Questions

Please find below answers to frequently asked questions
  1. What is this lawsuit about?
  2. What is a Class Action Lawsuit?
  3. Who is in the Class?
  4. What are the terms of the settlement?
  5. What are your options?
  6. Do I Have a Lawyer in this Lawsuit?
  7. Do I Need to Pay the Settlement Class Attorneys?
  8. Who represents the Class?
  9. Who represents LSI?
  1. What is this lawsuit about?

    The Mitchell case now pending in the Superior Court of New Jersey was brought on behalf of a class of individuals with mortgages in the State of New Jersey for which LSI Title Agency, Inc. ("LSI") served as the settlement agent. The lawsuit contends, among other things, that LSI improperly calculated the fee for recording mortgages with the County Clerk, resulting in an overcharge to the borrower, in violation of New Jersey common law and the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, N.J.S.A. 56:8-1

    LSI denies that it engaged in any such actions and denies any wrongdoing or liability on its part in connection with plaintiff's individual and class claims. The Court has not ruled on the merits of the plaintiff's individual or class claims or defenses and the Court has made no determination of wrongdoing or liability against LSI or in favor of the plaintiff or the Class.

    The proposed Settlement between the parties is a compromise of disputed claims. The parties have negotiated the Settlement in order to avoid the further costs, expenses, and uncertainties of litigation. The proposed settlement does not mean, and will not be construed to mean, that LSI is liable with respect to any claim asserted in the complaint filed in this action.

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  2. What is a Class Action Lawsuit?

    In a class action, one or more people called class representatives sue on behalf of people who they believe have similar claims. All of these people are a class or class members. One court resolves the issues for all class members, except for those who exclude themselves from the class.

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  3. Who is in the Class?

    The Class is defined by the Court as all individuals who:

    • Closed on a mortgage transaction for real property located in the State of New Jersey between October 10, 2006 and August 1, 2013,
    • were charged a fee by LSI for recording a mortgage with a County Clerk in the State of New Jersey, and
    • which fee exceeded the amount permitted to be charged under New Jersey law.

    If you received a Postcard Notice, this does not necessarily mean that you are a member of the class. Rather, notice is being provided to all individuals who were charged a mortgage recording fee by LSI between October 10, 2006 and August 1, 2013. To be a member of the class, you must have been charged a mortgage recording fee by LSI between October 10, 2006 and August 1, 2013, such fee must have been charged for recording a mortgage with a County Clerk in the State of New Jersey, and such fee must have exceeded the amount permitted to be charged under New Jersey law. People who meet all of these criteria and do not exclude themselves as set forth in Question 5 below will be deemed the "Class."

    All Notice Recipients who do not timely and validly exclude themselves from the Settlement will be deemed the "Settlement Class Members." You can determine if you are a member of the class by reviewing your closing documents, and specifically your HUD-1 From (commonly referred to as a settlement sheet) at Lines 1200 and 1201 to see if you were charged a mortgage recording fee and the amount of the fee.

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  4. What are the terms of the settlement?

    Payment to Class Members.
    Subject to the terms of the Settlement Agreement, and the Court's approval of the same, LSI has agreed to a procedure whereby for each Class Member who submits a claim, the Claims Administrator (with an appropriate monitoring from Plaintiff's Counsel) will review and recalculate the charge that should have been made for recording the mortgage. If this process reveals you were charged more than is allowed under NJSA 22A:4-4.1, the amount of such overcharge will be returned to you.

    This settlement benefit will be distributed out of the Settlement Fund through checks issued by the Claims Administrator.

    Only one claim will be paid and only one Settlement check will be issued for each loan.

    Checks issued will be void ninety (90) days after issuance. Any Class Member who fails to negotiate the check within ninety (90) days after issuance will forfeit the right to payment and will not be entitled to have the check reissued or to any further distribution from or to any further recourse against LSI, nor will the checks be subject to escheatment, but the Settlement Agreement and Release will be in all other respects be fully enforceable against the Claimant.

    NOTHING IN THE SETTLEMENT RELIEVES ANY BORROWER FROM HIS OR HER OBLIGATION TO PAY ANY AMOUNTS OWED BY THE BORROWER TO THE HOLDER OF HIS OR HER LOAN.

    Payment to Named Plaintiff.
    Subject to the terms of the Settlement Agreement and the Court's approval of the same, the Named Plaintiff will receive One Thousand Five Hundred Dollars ($1,500.00) in settlement of his individual and class claims and in recognition of his service as class representative.

    Class Counsel Fees and Costs.
    Subject to the Court's approval, counsel for the Named Plaintiff and the Class ("Class Counsel") will receive attorneys' fees and expenses and costs in an amount to be determined by the Court, but not to exceed Sixty-Five Thousand Dollars ($65,000.00) ("Class Counsel Fees and Costs"). To date, Class Counsel have not received any payment for services in conducting the action. Class Counsel will not request any amounts in addition to the amount of Class Counsel Fees and Costs approved by the Court from LSI, the Named Plaintiff, or the Class.

    Release.
    Under the Settlement Agreement, all Notice Recipients who do not timely and validly exclude themselves from the Settlement (the "Settlement Class Members"), will be bound by any final judgment entered by the Court and also bound by the Release provisions of the Settlement Agreement. The Settlement Agreement provides that all claims of the Settlement Class Members that arise from or concern the charging by LSI of a fee for recording a mortgage with a County Clerk in the State of New Jersey are released against LSI and the Released Parties as detailed in the Settlement Agreement.

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  5. What are your options?

    Remain a Member of the Class.
    If you do not object to the Settlement, you do not have to do anything to remain a Settlement Class Member.

    HOWEVER, YOU MUST ACCURATELY COMPLETE AND SUBMIT A CLAIM FORM BY DECEMBER 24, 2013 TO BE ELIGIBLE TO RECEIVE ANY PAYMENT.

    Right of Exclusion.
    You have the right to exclude yourself ("opt-out") from the Settlement by sending a timely written request for exclusion to:

    Mitchell v. LSI Settlement Administrator
    c/o Gilardi & Co. LLC
    Attn: Exclusions
    P.O. Box 6002
    Larkspur CA 94977-6002

    which must be postmarked on or before November 25, 2013. If you exclude yourself from the Settlement, you will have no right to make a Claim and you will have no right to the financial benefit described above. A request for exclusion must:

    * be in writing

    * state your current address, former address if different from the address to which the Notice Postcard or Class Notice was addressed, and the address to which the Notice Postcard and Class Notice was addressed

    * contain a signed statement that "I/we hereby request that I/we be excluded from the proposed Settlement Class in the Mitchell v. LSI Title Agency, Inc. litigation" and that the person(s) signing elect(s) to be excluded from any judgment entered pursuant to the Settlement.

    A request for exclusion that does not include all of the foregoing information, that is sent to an address other than the one designated in this Section above, or that is not sent within the time specified will be invalid, and the person(s) serving such a request will be bound as a Settlement Class Member, provided that the Settlement Agreement is finally approved. Only you can request exclusion. No one can request exclusion for another person, except in cases of disability, guardianship or conservatorship.

    Right to Object.
    You have the right to object to the Settlement so long as you are an actual Class Member. Notice Recipients who exclude themselves from the Settlement and Notice Recipients who are not actually members of the Class have no right to file or present any objection.

    If you wish to submit an objection rather than simply exclude yourself from the Settlement, you must file your objection in writing to the Clerk of the Court for the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division for Burlington County, County Office Building, 3rd Floor, Suite 354, 49 Rancocas Road, Mount Holly, NJ 08060 by no later than November 26, 2013.

    Your objection should reference the name of the case, Mitchell v. LSI Title Agency, Inc., and the case number, BUR-L-2876-12. Copies of your written objection must be mailed to Class Counsel and LSI's Counsel by the same date to the addresses in Section V and VI, above. A written objection must include:

    * the name, address and telephone number of the person, and provide proof of membership in the Settlement Class;

    * the specific grounds for the objection and any other reasons why you desire to be heard; and

    * any documents or writings that you desire the Court to consider.

    You may appear at the Fairness Hearing in person or through counsel, at your own expense. If you desire to appear in person or through counsel at the Fairness Hearing, your written objection must also include notice of your intention to so appear.

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  6. Do I Have a Lawyer in this Lawsuit?

    Yes. The Court has appointed DeNittis Osefchen, P.C., as Lead Counsel for the Settlement Class, whose information appears below, but you may hire your own attorney at your own cost.

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  7. Do I Need to Pay the Settlement Class Attorneys?

    You do not need to pay any of the fees or expenses for Class Counsel. If you hire your own lawyer, you may be responsible for paying that lawyer and any expenses.

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  8. Who represents the Class?

    The following attorneys represent the named plaintiff and the Class ("Class Counsel"):

    Stephen P. DeNittis, Esquire
    Joseph Osefchen, Esquire
    DeNittis Osefchen, P.C.
    5 Greentree Centre
    525 Route 73 North, Suite 410
    Marlton, New Jersey 08053

    Class Counsel represents your interest in this lawsuit. You will not be charged for their services. You may, however, hire your own attorney at your own cost to advise you in this matter.

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  9. Who represents LSI?

    The following attorneys represent LSI:

    R. Bruce Allensworth, Esquire
    Ryan M. Tosi, Esquire
    K&L Gates LLP
    State Street Financial Center
    One Lincoln Street
    Boston, MA 02111

    And

    Mark D. Marino, Esquire
    K&L Gates LLP
    One Newark Center
    Tenth Floor
    Newark, NJ 07102-5285

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