Plaintiff Rachel Johnson filed a class action lawsuit against Yahoo, Inc. in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The case name is Johnson v. Yahoo!, Inc., Inc. and the case number is 14-cv- 2028.
The lawsuit alleges that Yahoo violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) by using an automatic telephone dialing system to send the “Welcome” text message to cellphone numbers without first obtaining consent to send the text message. The TCPA provides $500 per violation and up to $1,500 if the violation is willful (intentional).
The plaintiff claims that this text message violates the TCPA, which prohibits the use of an “automatic telephone dialing system” to send text messages without the “prior express consent” of the called party. Yahoo says that the “Welcome” text message did not violate the TCPA. Yahoo also denies using an “automatic telephone dialing system” and claims that some of the potential class members may have provided “prior express consent.”Top
The Court determined that a class action was appropriate after the plaintiff asked the Court to certify a class. In a class action, one or more people called Class Representatives (in this case, Rachel Johnson), sue on behalf of a group of people who all suffered the same injury and have the same legal claims. In this case, the plaintiff sued on behalf of a class of people (together called a “Class” or “Class Members”) that received the same automated text message from Yahoo and argues that Yahoo violated the TCPA by sending the automated messages.Top
The Court certified the following Class:
“All persons within the United States to whose cellular telephone number Yahoo! sent the Welcome Message during the period commencing March 1, 2013 through March 31, 2013, while such cellular number was assigned to Sprint, and whose cellular telephone number is not associated with a Yahoo! user in Yahoo!’s records.”
To be a Class Member, you must have been the user of the cellular number that was sent the “Welcome” text message during March 2013.
If your number was serviced by a company other than Sprint, you may still be a Class Member if your number was assigned to the Sprint network. For a complete list of other service providers who might have provided your cellular telephone service, please click here.
Special Instructions for Cellular Account Holders: If you were a cellular telephone account holder in March 2013, you are only a class member if you were the user of the number to which Yahoo sent the “Welcome” text message. The user may have been on your cellular telephone plan. Please forward the notice you received to all persons on your cellular telephone plan in March 2013.Top
If you received a postcard it means that you, or someone in your cellular telephone plan in March of 2013, were identified as a potential member of the class as Yahoo’s business records show that it sent the “Welcome” text message to a number in your cellular telephone plan in March 2013.Top
The lawsuit seeks money for Class Members and attorneys’ fees and costs. The TCPA provides $500 per violation (in this case, per “Welcome” text message) and up to $1,500 if the violation is willful.Top
No money or benefits are available now because the Court has not yet decided whether Yahoo did anything wrong, and the two sides have not settled the case. There is no guarantee that money or benefits ever will be obtained. If they are, Class Members will be notified about how to receive a share.Top
If you are a Class Member, you must decide whether to stay in the Class or exclude yourself from it.Top
If you stay in the Class, you will be able to share in any money or benefits that may result from this class action. You will be legally bound by all orders and judgments made by the Court in this class action and you will give up any rights to sue Yahoo separately about the “Welcome” text message TCPA claims made in this lawsuit.Top
If you exclude yourself, you will not receive money or benefits that may result from the class action, but you will keep your rights to bring your own case against Yahoo over the “Welcome” text message TCPA claims raised in this case. In addition, the time you have in which to file your own lawsuit (called the “statute of limitations”) will begin to run again. You will have the same amount of time to file the lawsuit that you had when this case was filed.Top
To exclude yourself from the Class you must have submitted an exclusion request no later than March 13, 2017. As this date has passed, it is too late to request exclusion from the Class.Top
If you are a Class Member and do nothing, you are choosing to stay in the Class. You will be able share in any money or benefits that may result from this class action. You will also be legally bound by all orders and judgments made by the Court in this class action and you will give up any rights to sue Yahoo separately about the “Welcome” text message TCPA claims made in this lawsuit.Top
Yes, the Court decided that the attorneys representing the named plaintiff Rachel Johnson should also represent Class Members. These attorneys are called “Class Counsel”. You will not be charged for the services of these lawyers. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, you may hire one at your own expense.Top
Plaintiff contends that individual actions are not feasible because the TCPA does not provide for a separate payment of attorneys’ fees and expenses. Nevertheless, if Class Counsel wins the lawsuit against Yahoo or reaches a settlement with them, they may ask the Court to approve the payment of attorney’s fees and expenses from any judgment or settlement amount. Class Counsel has expended time and expense in this case without any guaranty of payment. Regardless of whether the Class wins or loses the lawsuit against Yahoo, you will not personally owe them anything.Top
If your notice was forwarded by the Postal Service, or if it was otherwise sent to you at an address which is not current, you should immediately update your contact information by clicking here.
Alternatively, if you would prefer to update your address through the mail, you may send a letter to: Yahoo Text Message Class Action Notice Administrator, c/o KCC Class Action Services, PO Box 30227, College Station, TX 77842-3227 stating your name, past and current addresses, telephone number, and reference the case name and number (Johnson v. Yahoo!, Inc. 14-cv-2028).Top
You can review important updates and important documents filed in the case at this website. You may also email the Yahoo Text Message Class Action Notice Administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. You can also call toll free to Keogh Law, Ltd. for further information at (866) 726-1092 if you still have any questions. Before doing so, please read the Long Form Notice carefully.
DO NOT CONTACT THE COURT REGARDING THE NOTICETop