Fanelli v. Total Renal Care, Inc.
Fanelli v. Total Renal Care Settlement Administrator
19-2-10835-5 SEA

Frequently Asked Questions

 

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  • Davita’s records show that you worked for Davita as a non-exempt registered nurse or dialysis nurse in the State of Washington at some point between April 22, 2016, and May 2, 2020.  The Court has allowed the Notice to be sent to you to inform you about a proposed settlement of a class action lawsuit, and about your options, before the Court decides whether to finally approve the Settlement.  If the Court approves the Settlement, and after any appeals are resolved, payments will be made to Settlement Class Members who do not affirmatively request to be excluded from the Settlement.

    The Notice explains the Case, the Class Action Settlement, your legal rights, what benefits are available, who is eligible for them, and how to get them.

  • The Plaintiff, former employee Megan Fanelli, claims that Davita violated Washington State wage and hour laws by failing to provide meal periods in conformity with the requirements of Washington law and/or failing to provide proper payment for any missed, interrupted, shortened, untimely, or non-compliant meal periods (including an alleged failure to provide payment for any such non-compliant meal periods at a rate that is inclusive of any required overtime, shift differential, or premium rates). Davita has denied the Plaintiff’s claims.

    The Honorable Brian McDonald of the Superior Court for the State of Washington in and for King County is overseeing this Class Action. The lawsuit is known as Megan Fanelli v. Total Renal Care, Inc., King County Superior Court Civil Case No. 19-2-10835-5 SEA (the “Case”).

  • In a class action lawsuit, one or more people called a “Class Representative” sues on behalf of other people whom they believe have similar claims. The people together are a “Class” or “Class Members.” The employee who sued, and who represents the Class, is called the Plaintiff.

    The entity the Plaintiff sued (in this case Total Renal Care, Inc.) is called the Defendant. In a class action, one court resolves the issues for everyone in the Class—except for those people who choose to exclude themselves from the Class.

  • The Court did not decide in favor of the Plaintiff or Defendant. Instead, both sides agreed to a Settlement. This allows the parties to avoid the cost of a trial, and the people affected will be entitled to compensation. The Class Representative and her attorney think the Settlement is best for everyone in the Class.

  • As part of the Settlement of the Case, the King County Superior Court has decided that everyone who fits the following description is a Class Member:

    All current and former non-exempt employees who worked for the Defendant as a registered nurse or dialysis nurse in the State of Washington sometime from April 22, 2016, through and including May 2, 2020.

    If it is approved, the Settlement will cover all Settlement Class Members who have not timely and affirmatively excluded themselves from the Case. To be a part of and receive any money pursuant to the Settlement, Settlement Class Members need do nothing (other than refrain from affirmatively opting out of the Settlement).

  • The Settlement will resolve all of the claims Settlement Class Members could have brought against the Defendant regarding Davita’s alleged failure to provide meal periods in conformity with the requirements of Washington law and/or alleged failure to provide proper payment for any missed, interrupted, shortened, untimely, or non-compliant meal periods, as well as any claim for attendant overtime, shift differentials, premium pay, penalties, interest, fees, costs, attorney fees, and all other forms of relief that were sought or could have been sought based on the facts alleged in the Complaint relating to missed, interrupted, shortened, untimely, or non-compliant meal periods.

  • Subject to Court approval, the essential terms of the Settlement are as follows:

    Davita will pay a total of $420,000 as part of the Settlement, apportioned as follows:

    • Class Fund: Davita will pay $300,000, which will be available for the payment of Settlement Awards to Settlement Class Members who do not timely opt out of this Settlement.
    • Service Award: Davita will pay $5,000 to Plaintiff and Class Representative Megan Fanelli for serving as proposed class representative in this Case.
    • Settlement Administration Expenses Award: Davita will pay up to $9,500 to the Settlement Administrator for the processing of the Settlement, including the expenses of providing notice of the Settlement to Settlement Class Members, handling the claims administration process, processing payments to Settlement Class Members, and handling tax reporting requirements. Any money remaining from Settlement Administration Expenses Award after fully paying the Settlement Administrator will be distributed to Class Counsel as a supplemental attorney fees and costs award.
    • Attorney Fees and Costs Award: Davita will pay $103,100 to Plaintiff’s attorney for the attorney fees and litigation costs they have incurred and will incur through final judgment in representing Plaintiff and the Settlement Class, plus an additional $2,400 to cover the mediation fees incurred by Class Counsel in this Case.


    Monetary Relief: The amount available to the Settlement Class is intended to compensate Settlement Class Members for the disputed wages and other compensation they allegedly lost and damages they are allegedly owed as a result of the practices alleged in the Case. As noted above, Davita strongly denies the allegations in this matter, and the Court has not made any determinations in this case regarding liability.

    Distribution of Settlement Fund: Each Settlement Class Member who does not submit a valid and timely request for exclusion will automatically receive a settlement payment. Your settlement payment will be calculated based on an analysis of your time records at Davita, which includes your hours worked, information regarding your missed or non-compliant meal periods (if any), and rates of pay. The calculation of the settlement award for each individual Settlement Class Member will be based on the percentage relationship between the dollar value of all missed or non-compliant meal periods that the employee reported to Davita from April 22, 2016, through and including May 2, 2020 (the “Claim Period”) and the aggregate dollar value of all missed or non-compliant meal periods that all Settlement Class Members reported to Davita during the Claim Period. Settlement Class Members will be paid the greater of: (i) Twenty Dollars ($20.00) (the “Minimum Payment”); or (ii) their pro rata share of the Class Fund (exclusive of any Minimum Payments) based on the above described calculations. Settlement Class Members who did not report any missed or non-compliant meal periods to Davita during the Claim Period will receive the Minimum Payment. Checks will be mailed to Settlement Class Members by the Settlement Administrator. If any checks have not been deposited within one hundred eighty (180) days after distribution, the funds from those checks will be considered Residual Funds. These Residual Funds will be distributed by the Settlement Administrator to the Legal Foundation of Washington. Davita will not receive funds from any uncashed checks.

    Tax Treatment of Settlement Awards: Fifty Percent (50%) of each Settlement Class Member’s settlement award will be treated as wages and subject to normal tax withholding and shall be reported to the taxing authorities and the Settlement Class Member on an IRS Form W‑2. Fifty Percent (50%) of each Settlement Class Member’s settlement award will be treated as non-wages (penalties, enhancements, and prejudgment interest) on which there will be no tax withholding and for which an IRS Form 1099 (marked “Other Income”) shall be issued to the taxing authorities and the Settlement Class Member. In addition to the monies it is contributing to the Settlement Fund described above, Davita is also paying all required employer‑paid taxes incurred as part of the Settlement, as well as an additional Two Thousand, Five Hundred Dollars ($2,500.00) directly to the Settlement Administrator to help defray the cost of administering the Settlement. Davita’s payment of these employer‑paid taxes and separate settlement administration payment will not decrease the funds available to Settlement Class Members.

    Release of Claims: Upon final approval by the Court, the Settlement Class and each Settlement Class Member who has not submitted a valid and timely written request to be excluded from the Settlement will irrevocably release all claims against Davita, whether known or unknown, that were brought or that could have been brought based on any facts alleged in the Complaint with respect to a failure to provide compliant meal periods under Washington law during the Claim Period and/or for failing to provide proper payment for any missed, interrupted, shortened, untimely, or non-compliant meal periods under Washington law during the period from April 22, 2016, through and including August 20, 2020 (the date the Class Action Settlement was preliminarily approved by the Superior Court), including, but not limited to, any claims for, arising out of, or relating to any missed, interrupted, shortened, untimely, or non-compliant meal periods, and any claims for unpaid overtime, premium pay, differential pay, penalties, enhancements, and/or attorney fees and costs attendant to any alleged missed, interrupted, shortened, untimely, or non-compliant meal periods.

    Dismissal of Action: Upon final approval, the Court will enter a judgment of dismissal of the Case with prejudice, but shall retain jurisdiction to enforce the terms of the settlement.

  • To get a payment, you need do nothing. As long as you do not submit a written request to be excluded from the Settlement, you will be a Settlement Class Member and will be entitled to payment.

  • Checks were mailed on January 22, 2021. Please allow up to 1-2 weeks for the check to be received.

  • Please send us the request in writing via mail at PO Box 91226, Seattle, WA 98111. Please also include your updated address. Once we receive your written request, we will begin the process of stopping payment on your initial check issued on January 22. If you receive the initial check with that date, do not attempt to cash it, as it will likely have been stopped and will not clear, and you may suffer bank penalties from the rejected check. Requests will take approximately 2-3 weeks to process. You should receive the new check soon after that. Please note that all checks will become stale on July 21, 2021, and cannot be reissued after that date.

  • As indicated above, Class Counsel will seek payment of their attorney fees and costs in the amount of $103,100, plus an additional $2,400 to cover the mediation fees incurred by Class Counsel in this Case, which must be approved by the Court as part of the final approval of this Settlement. Class Counsel have been working on this case since March 2019 and have not received any fees or reimbursements for the costs of the lawsuit.

  • If you fit the definition of a Settlement Class Member and want to exclude yourself from the Settlement, you must request exclusion in writing by November 2, 2020. You may be excluded as a member of the class by submitting a written request stating, “I request that I be excluded from the Class in the case of Fanelli v. Total Renal Care, Inc.” The request must include your name, your address, and your signature. You must mail a copy of the letter to the Settlement Administrator at the following address postmarked no later than November 2, 2020. The period to exclude yourself from the settlement has passed.


    If you exclude yourself from the Settlement (i.e., opt out), you will not receive any payment from the Settlement. You will also not be entitled to object to the Settlement. If you exclude yourself, you will not be bound by the terms of the Settlement, including the Release described in Section 7 of the notice. This means you will retain the right at your own expense, to pursue any claims you may have against Davita.

  • If you are a Settlement Class Member, have not excluded yourself from the Settlement, and do not like the Settlement or the fee request, you can object. You must do so in writing and you must state the reasons why you think the Court should not approve the Settlement. If you object, be sure to include your name, address, and telephone number, the name of the Case (Megan Fanelli v. Total Renal Care, Inc., King County Superior Court Civil Case No. 19-2-10835-5 SEA), the reasons you object to the Settlement, and a signature. You must mail a copy of the objection to the following address postmarked no later than November 2, 2020. The period to object to the settlement has passed.

  • The King County Superior Court held its Fairness Hearing at 8:30 AM on November 2, 2020, before Judge Brian McDonald. The Court approved the settlement on the same day.

  • The King County Superior Court held its Fairness Hearing at 8:30 AM on November 2, 2020, before Judge Brian McDonald. The Court approved the settlement on the same day.

  • The King County Superior Court held its Fairness Hearing at 8:30 AM on November 2, 2020, before Judge Brian McDonald. The Court approved the settlement on the same day.

     
  • If you do nothing—that is, if you do not mail or deliver a timely written request to exclude yourself from the Settlement—you will be part of the Settlement Class and will be entitled to a share of the Settlement. You will also be bound by the terms of the Settlement, including the Release described in Section 7 of the notice.

  • The Notice summarizes the proposed Settlement. More details are in the Settlement Agreement. You can get a copy of the Settlement Agreement by writing to the Settlement Administrator, JND Class Action Administration (“JND”), by visiting the website here, or by contacting the Settlement Administrator at 1-844-975-1785 or info@TotalRenalCareSettlement.com. Plaintiff’s motion for final approval of the settlement agreement, including Class Counsel’s request for attorney fees, costs, Settlement Administration Expenses, and a Service Award for the named Plaintiff will be available for you to review on November 13, 2020 here.

For More Information

Visit this website often to get the most up-to-date information.

Mail

Fanelli v. Total Renal Care, Inc.
c/o JND Legal Administration
PO Box 91226
Seattle, WA 98111