QUESTIONS ABOUT THE ELLIS V SWIFT SETTLEMENT RAISED – July 30, 2014
In Ellis v. Swift Transportation Co. of AZ , the plaintiffs claimed that Swift violated the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act by performing credit checks without advising applicants of certain things required by the law. A tentative settlement was reached between the parties which called for each owner operator to receive $50 in settlement of these claims. The settlement notice that was mailed did not advise owner operators of the full scope of claims that might be “released” by accepting the $50 or by failing to exclude themselves from the settlement. Because the release language in the settlement could be taken to mean that Owner Ops give up claims which are being raised in this case: such as whether Swift engaged in Forced Labor by using the DAC Report to force drivers to continue to work for Swift, Getman Sweeney is extremely concerned that settlement is not in any Owner-Operator’s interest. Plaintiffs’ lawyers in this case are reaching out to the Plaintiffs’ attorneys in Ellis v. Swift , to see if our concerns can be addressed in such a way that the drivers can participate in that settlement and avoid giving up claims that are asserted in this case. Until further notice, however, Getman Sweeney advises its clients to DO NOTHING with respect to making a claim in the Ellis case. We will be in touch with clients individually following our discussion with the lawyers for the drivers in the Ellis case. If you have not heard from us individually by mid-September, please contact the office for further advice concerning how to handle claims in the Ellis case.