Each party investigated the facts of this case by obtaining, reviewing, and analyzing information from the other party regarding the allegations in the Action.
The Named Plaintiff and SquareTrade did not agree regarding the merits of the Named Plaintiff’s allegations with respect to liability, or with respect to the amount of money (if any) that would be recoverable by the Settlement Class if the Named Plaintiff were to have prevailed at trial. The issues on which the Named Plaintiff and SquareTrade disagreed included: (1) whether SquareTrade violated Iowa’s Private Consumer Frauds Act, Iowa Code Chapter 714H, the Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act, 15 U.S.C. § 2301 et seq., or the common law prohibition against unjust enrichment; (2) whether this action could proceed in court on a class basis as opposed to in arbitration on an individual basis; (3) whether a class could legally be certified by the Court if the parties did not settle; and (4) the amount of monetary relief (if any) to which Settlement Class Members would be entitled.
This matter did not go to trial and the Court did not decide in favor of either the Named Plaintiff or SquareTrade. Instead, the Named Plaintiff and SquareTrade agreed to settle the Action, and the Settlement was approved by the Court and is now final.
The parties negotiated the terms of the Agreement of Settlement (the “Settlement Agreement”) in the Action, which is on file with the Court and also can be found in the Important Documents. The Settlement Agreement was reached only after arm’s-length negotiations between the parties, who were represented by separate counsel with extensive experience and expertise in class action litigation. During the negotiations, both parties had a clear view of the strengths and weaknesses of their respective claims and defenses.
Although SquareTrade vigorously denied, and continues to deny, any wrongdoing or liability regarding the Named Plaintiff’s allegations, SquareTrade agreed to settle the Action to avoid the expense, risk, and inconvenience of a trial on the merits and any subsequent appeals, and to put to rest and finally terminate the Action and all Released Claims (as defined below in the response to Question No. 6).
Based on a thorough analysis of the facts and the applicable law, and after taking into account the material benefits afforded to the Settlement Class through settlement of this Action, and the risk, delay, and expense of a trial on the merits against SquareTrade and any subsequent appeals, the Named Plaintiff and Lead Class Counsel also concluded that a settlement of the Action on the terms set forth in the Settlement Agreement would be fair, reasonable, adequate, and in the best interest of all Settlement Class Members.