Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) 

What is a class action lawsuit? 

A class action lawsuit is a type of lawsuit where one of the parties is a group of people who are represented collectively by a member of that group who is often referred to as the lead plaintiff.  In this case, the lead plaintiff is Tony Burford, who represents the interests of all of the class members.


What is this lawsuit about? 

You can read about the lawsuit here. 

 

Will I be contacted to testify in court?

Probably not.  The potential class is made up of hundreds, if not thousands of people.  If the case should go to trial, either the plaintiff or the defendants may choose to call a small number of class members to testify at the trial. However, based on the size of the class, and the small number of class members who could potentially be called as a witness, the odds of any class member being called to testify in court are exceedingly small. 

   

How much can I expect to receive? 

How much each class member can expect to receive depends in part upon the amount of bail money that was impermissibly retained by defendants to cover that particular class members court costs.  Unlike most class actions, in this case, each class member has quantifiable damages.  For example, the lead plaintiff, Tony Burford, had $1,133.05 impermissibly retained from his bail money to cover Constable and Live Scan Fees.  Accordingly, the most he could receive in damages would be the amount illegally retained or $1,133.05.  The best way to look at it is that each class member is seeking a refund of his or her bail money that was illegally retained by the defendants to cover certain court costs.      


How & when will I receive my settlement payment?

The first step to receiving a settlement payment is becoming a member of the class.  To do this, you must either fill out and submit the form on this website or call the attorneys for the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group.  This will enable them to obtain the information regarding your particular claim and determine how much bail money was impermissibly retained in your particular case.  When enough people have come forward, the plaintiff will move for certification of the class.  After certification of the class, each class member will receive formal notice of their status as class members. At this point when the class members will get paid depends on the course of the litigation.  If, after certification, the case does not settle, but instead goes to trial, payment would depend on the plaintiff prevailing at trial.  This process could take some time and is contingent upon a number of factors so it is impossible to say when the class members would get paid.  As for how the class members will get paid, assuming the case settles or plaintiff prevails at trial, an administrator will be set up to notify the class members and process their claims.     

 
How can I join the class? 

To join the class, you must either fill out and submit the form on this webpage or call the attorneys for the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group.  Once you do this, someone from the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group will reach out to you and obtain the information necessary to determine class membership.  (put in link to form)


What if I move/change my information after I already submitted? 

You can re-submit your information on our submission form.  Simply note in the short answer box which info you are changing. In addition, you can call the attorneys for the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group and update them with your new information.  (put in link to form)


Do I need to hire my own attorney? 

You don’t need to hire your own attorney.  Even though a class has not yet been certified by the Court, the attorneys for the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group have a duty to protect your interest as potential class members.  Once the class is certified, and you qualify for class membership, as a class member you will be the client of the attorneys for the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group. 

How do the attorneys get paid? 

There are a number of ways that class action attorney’s get paid, but in the circumstances of this case the class attorneys will be paid based on the lodestar, which is nothing more than the hours worked by the attorneys and their staff multiplied by the attorneys and their staffs hourly rate.  The class attorney’s fees are paid by the defendants. 

 
How can I exclude myself from the class? 

After the class is certified by the Court, you will receive a formal Notice, approved by the Court, that will provide you with information on how to “opt-out” or exclude yourself from the class.

 

How can I get more information?

You can get updates on the lawsuit, including on questions related to class certification or settlement, by accessing this website, which has a section devoted updating the progress of the litigation.  You also can call the attorney’s at the Delco Bail Refund Litigation Group at

267-432-8542. 

What is a surety?

A surety is a person who actually posts the cash bail on behalf of a criminal defendant.  In the context of this class action lawsuit, a surety does not include a professional bail bondsman, but instead is referring to a private person, such as a family member or friend, who posted the cash bail. 

 

Can a surety be a class member?

Yes.  If the criminal defendant for whom the surety posted cash bail had his criminal charges dismissed or was found not guilty, and if bail money was retained to cover court costs such as Constable or Live Scan Fees, the surety may be a class member and entitled to a refund of the bail money illegally retained.