NOTICE OF CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT
Coburn v. Stamps.com
Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. BC353721
A proposed settlement (the “Settlement”) has been reached in the class action lawsuit entitled Coburn v. Stamps.com, Los Angeles Superior Court, Case No. BC353721.
IF YOU ARE A MEMBER OF THIS CLASS OF PERSONS, YOU SHOULD READ THIS NOTICE CAREFULLY BECAUSE IT WILL AFFECT YOUR RIGHTS
A. PURPOSE OF THIS NOTICE
The purpose of this notice is to advise you that the Los Angeles Superior Court has certified for settlement purposes the following class:
All former customers of Stamps.com from June 9, 2002 through November 19 2008, who cancelled their account and were billed for, and paid, their final months' service fee for the Stamps.com PC Postage monthly service.
According to Stamps.com's records, you are a member of the class. The purpose of this Notice is to inform you about the proposed Settlement and to discuss your rights and options and deadlines with respect to the lawsuit and the Settlement.
B. DESCRIPTION OF THE LAWSUIT.
Plaintiffs contend that Stamps.com subjected the Class Members to unreasonable hold times when they attempted to cancel over the phone and thereby impeded their ability to close their accounts in a timely manner and that Stamps.com should have pro-rated the Class Members' last month bills to the date they closed their accounts. Stamps.com denies these allegations. The complaint alleges cause of action for Unfair Competition, Breach of Contract, Fraud and Violations of the California Consumer Legal Remedies Act.
This Settlement is the result of extensive settlement discussions. Both sides agree that, in light of the risks and expenses associated with further litigation, this Settlement is fair and appropriate under the circumstances. Please be advised that the Los Angeles County Superior Court has not ruled on the merits of Plaintiffs' claims or Stamps.com's defenses.
The attorneys for the class (“Class Counsel”) in this lawsuit are:
JEFFREY P. SPENCER, ESQ.,
LAW OFFICES OF
1211 Puerta Del Sol, Suite 150
San Clemente, CA 92673
SCOTT SCHUTZMAN, ESQ.
LAW OFFICES OF SCOTT SCHUTZMAN
3700 S. Susan Street, Suite 120
Santa Ana, CA 92704
On January 5, 2009, the Court granted preliminary approval to the proposed Settlement. The Court will decide whether to give final approval to the Settlement at a hearing scheduled for April 7, 2009 at 8:30 A.M.
C. SUMMARY OF PROPOSED SETTLEMENT:
Subject to Court approval, the terms of the Settlement are as follows:
STAMPS. COM will provide all class members with an opportunity to receive two free months of service, a value of approximately $35.98, with no obligation after the two month period. Stamps.com will revise its policies to pro-rate final bills to the last date of service or permit its customers to continue to use its service until the last day of the month. Stamps.com will revise its procedures so that average hold time for customers attempting to cancel will not exceed 5-7 minutes (excepting the days immediately following the release of a new Stamps.com version upgrade, change in postage rates, or significant policy change or technical difficulty).
Class Counsel have not been paid for their time and expenses prosecuting the case and will ask the Court to award attorney's fees and costs equal to $450,000. In addition, Class Counsel will ask the Court to authorize an enhanced award for class Representative Coburn in the amount of $5,000 for his time and effort in bringing the case on behalf of the class.
Each member of the Class is deemed to release and discharge Stamps.com, and each of its officers, directors, employees, shareholders, agents, representatives, predecessors, successors, assigns, parents, subsidiaries, and attorneys, from each of the claims covered by the settlement.
Following final approval of the settlement the lawsuit will be dismissed with prejudice.
D. TO CLAIM THE BENEFITS OF THE SETTLEMENT:
You will be automatically entitled to the benefits of the settlement if the Court approves the settlement. After the Court approves the settlement, you will be sent an email communication containing instructions for how to receive the two months free service. You will have one year from the date the email is sent to you to take advantage of the two months free service. Once you respond to the email, follow the instructions to open your account you can start your 2 months free service. Please note that, other than the free service, you remain responsible for all actual U.S. Postage costs and other charges incurred by you through your account. At the completion of the two month free period, your account will be automatically closed and all unused postage purchased by you will be returned to you pursuant to United States Postal Service regulations. You will not be charged anything more. If you wish to continue with a Stamps.com account, at the conclusion of the two month free period you will be provided an opportunity to continue your account with Stamps.com, although you will be under no obligation to do so.
The Claims Administrator is Desmond, Marcello & Amster.
Mail Address: Stamps.com Notice Administrator
c/o Desmond, Marcello & Amster
P. O. Box 451999
Los Angeles, California 90045
E. TO REQUEST EXCLUSION FROM THE SETTLEMENT.
If you do not want to participate in the Settlement, you must email or mail a “Request for Exclusion” to the Claims Administrator at the email or postal address listed above. Please indicate in your email or letter that you wish to be excluded from the class, and list your name and address. In order to be valid, your Request for Exclusion must be dated no later than March 23, 2009.
If you timely and properly submit a Request for Exclusion, you will not receive any of the settlement proceeds, but you will retain whatever rights you may have against Stamps.com.
F. TO OBJECT TO THE SETTLEMENT.
If you believe the Settlement is unfair or inadequate in any respect, you may object to the Settlement, personally or through an attorney, by filing a written objection with the Court and mailing a copy of your objection to Class Counsel and the Claims Administrator at the above addresses. All objections must be signed and set forth your address, telephone number, social security number and the name of the case, Coburn v. Stamps.com Case No BC353721. All objections must be filed and postmarked no later than March 23, 2009. If you submit an objection, you may appear, personally or through an attorney, at your own expense, at the final approval hearing (discussed below). Your objection should clearly explain why you object to the Settlement and must state whether you (or someone on your behalf) intend to appear at the final approval hearing.
Any Class member who does not object in the manner provided above shall be deemed to have waived any objections, and shall be forever foreclosed from objecting to the fairness or adequacy of the proposed Settlement, the payment of attorney's fees and costs, the claims process, the enhancement awards to the Plaintiffs, and all other aspects of the Settlement. If the Settlement is not approved, the lawsuit will continue to be prepared for trial or other judicial resolution.
G. IF YOU DO NOTHING.
If you do nothing in response to this Notice, you will automatically participate in the settlement, which means you will be entitled to all of the benefits of the settlement and you will deemed to release all claims against Stamps.com covered by the settlement.
H. FINAL APPROVAL HEARING ON PROPOSED SETTLEMENT.
The Final Approval Hearing on the fairness and adequacy of the proposed Settlement, the plan of distribution, and Class Counsel's request for attorney's fees and costs will be held on April 7, 2009 at 8:30 A.M. in Department 49 of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, located at 111 N. Hill Street, Los Angeles, California. The Final Approval Hearing may be continued without further notice.
I. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION.
This Notice summarizes the lawsuit, the Settlement and related matters. For more information, you may inspect the Court files at the records office located at111 N. Hill Street, Los Angeles, California. If you have any questions regarding this Notice, you may contact Class Counsel at the email address set forth above. If your email address changes, please promptly notify the Claims Administrator.
PLEASE DO NOT CALL OR WRITE THE COURT ABOUT THIS NOTICE
BY ORDER OF THE SUPERIOR COURT
SPOKANE, WASHINGTON -- After signing up for Stamps.com's "service" I was immediately billed $17.95 even though it was supposed to be a 4 week FREE trial. Realizing this company did not keep their word I chose to cancel my account with them the same day. Actually I should say I ATTEMPTED to cancel my account -- there is a link on their website to cancel -- but it won't let you... "not able to process your request at this time" pops up and you are directed to call the customer service number. I sat on hold a total of 4 hours over as many days and no one ever answered (keep in mind this was during regular business hours).
Not being allowed to cancel my account, I have been billed once a month since December for services NEVER RENDERED! This website is a scam like non-other, claiming to be reputable -- when in reality they are lying thieves. How they can still be in business and not have to face criminal charges is beyond me.
I have spent hours on the phone and had file a dispute form every month for 4 months now -- trying to get a chargeback to my debit card since Stamps.com continues to make unauthorized charges to my account. What a sad and pathetic example this company is setting. In this country it is illegal and wrong to use a weapon and steal someone's money -- apparently it is perfectly acceptable to steal if your weapon of choice is the internet.
Do your homework before giving your credit/debit card info out online. There are countless companies just like Stamps.com who are depending on the fact that you won't. Sign up for an account with Stamps.com if you like being taken advantage of by lying, cheating snakes.
I was very happy with the service I got from Stamps.com. It is very handy to be able to buy stamps without running to the post office, but what I do not understand is why do they have to charge a fee to keep your account open if you are not using it every day. I print out stamps one page at a time and they will last me about 6 month then I will print some more, but in the meantime I pay a fee to keep the account open. This seems to me that I am throwing good money away for the convenience of saving a trip to the post office, very 21st century and a waste of money.
The registration process is misleading; they do not tell you about the $15.99 monthly service charge at the end of trial. No email confirmation on the charge either - you'll realize it only when you see the charge on your credit card. The email does mention the ostensible free $5 worth postage to get you started though. The email would probably be weeded out by spam filters of most email programs, so you won't always see it and there's no way you know you have registered!
There's no way the customer service personnel would reverse the charge even when you mention you never intended to purchase anything from them. They'll try to lure you with courtesy postage credits that you don't have a need for or monthly fee waivers that will keep you in the system, and if you are not careful enough to call and cancel the account, potentially be duped again. And worse, they need you to print postage on their rolls and sheets, which they purportedly mailed to you!! And somehow, they imagine that you can print postage directly on your envelopes/packages even when you don't have any to mail. I think they are trying to give Ponzi a run for his money!
To add to your woes, the website is perpetually down with "limited functionality", which only allows you to change your password! So in effect, you'll be billed a steep $15.99 per month for a service that you were never able to access! In a nutshell, it is not a product worth anything for individuals. USPS' online service is far more efficient, and all they ask for is a shipping/handling of $1.
12959 CORAL TREE PLACE -- My complaint is simple: 1. Very difficult to cancel. Must be done by phone... I never found a way to do so otherwise. If there is, it is hidden or hard to find. 2. They charged my credit card a fee I was not verbally made aware of when I cancelled. I might have legally been held to it... but they didn't tell me it was going to be charged. Probably because I was already angry. They should have still let me know.
First let me tell you I only use stamps for Birthday cards I am mailing and Christmas Card. A book of stamps I buy at the Post office last me all year. So when I say I have no need to order 60 a month stamps I can print on line I mean it. Until I started getting charges for Stamps.com on my bank statement I had never heard of this company. I cancelled my card thinking someone had used my number for their account, yesterday I opened a PAST DUE notice in the mail.
Who are these people and how did they get my credit card number and how do I get rid of this problem. Again, I have no need for stamps online (def. not $60 a month worth), I have never heard of this company and DID NOT order their service. This is a total scam!! Anyone know how to get this cleared up?
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA -- According to the website, Stamps.com, I'm not a customer because my account does not exist, yet by phone I've been a customer since March 07. I received one email from this company, which was a welcome email which I responded to promptly with a cancellation, which they have on file, because for days I had been unable to access the site and services promised. So for 10 months I've been billed $159.90 for service I have had no access to, no emails from or notice from.
Even tonight I was supposed to get an email from **, but no email has arrived. They never sent me a welcome package with my free scale or postage for opening an account. Yea, it was charged on my credit account but I've been a bit busy recovering from a major car accident in June 07, the third car accident in less than a year, so my hectic life as a single mom of two has only become chaos with numerous doctors' visits and therapy appointments. This company is no better than the three people who caused my three car accidents, they just keep costing me money I don't have and just leave me with a headache.
They couldn't provide me with the promised services but they certainly can steal from my account, $159.90, two weeks of groceries for me. Supervisor ** who has the authority to refund all my money for services not provided or accessible to me, but he chooses to refund $47.00, this company is just another scheme. I hope the $159.90 Stamps.com basically stole from me, a single mom of two, receiving no child support and working part-time seven days just to get by, was worth it.
I signed up for a 4 week trial period with Stamps.com using my Visa check card. The program did nothing for me. I made a number of phone calls and emails to cancel my account. I was told it has been taken care of each time. They lied because now I have an unauthorized charge on my new check card. I cancelled my old card and now have a new one. I called Stamps.com regarding the charge and recorded the conversation. The guy I spoke to basically called me a liar about the charge because it does not show up on his computer but assured me my account has been cancelled but I will be charge an additional charge of $24.99.
I told him I do not authorize that charge and he will not charge it. We went round and round about it until he gave in and told me it will not be charged. Keep in mind I recorded this conversation. I called the Billing number for Stamps.com and the guy I spoke with basically called me a liar as well because there are no records of me calling or emailing in the past cancelling my account until today 12/5/2006. He told me there is nothing he can do for me.
In the meantime I have contacted my bank and they will be doing their own investigation for fraud. I don't know what Stamps.com's problem is. In my opinion they are a fraud company trying to steal money from people. They did not have my authorization to charge my account when I made a number of phone calls and emails cancelling my account. I have to pay for unqualifying, unprofessional, untrustworthy company. In my opinion Stamps.com is a fraud.