08/21/2020 - Ian Hicks Statement

Statement from Ian Hicks regarding the eRentPayment settlement:

Hello All,

We wanted to provide additional information as to why the proposed class settlement reflects an appropriate outcome for the putative class members.  After over two years of litigation, discovery, and investigative efforts, involving a complex bankruptcy case and the Colorado litigation, the parties and their counsel identified the entities that were primarily responsible for your damages (i.e., eCheckit and Staffease). eCheckit is in an assetless bankruptcy liquidation, and Staffease similarly has no assets or insurance coverage.  

If the Colorado litigation proceeded to trial, the current Defendants, eRentPayment LLC and Base Commerce LLC, would be able to point to the Staffease and eCheckit as the real “bad actors” and liable parties, and it’s doubtful that the Colorado court even has jurisdiction over Base Commerce.   The likelihood of obtaining a judgment against eRent or Base would be extremely unlikely.  And even if the putative class obtained a judgment from the Court, it would be highly unlikely that it would be able to recover money from those entities, because eRentPayment LLC’s insurance contains exclusions and the company has few assets.  And even if the court did have jurisdiction over Base Commerce LLC, Base’s liability on contractual claims is limited to $5,000.00, in the aggregate total, for all class members’ losses.  In the opinion of counsel for the class representatives, the proposed settlement in the Colorado litigation represents a windfall for the putative class members. 

It is also crucial to understand that if the putative class members opt out of the class settlement, then they will each have to hire their own lawyer, pay filing fees and other substantial costs, and go through their own trials.  It could be a year or more before that process plays out, especially in light of the court delays with Covid 19.  At the end of that process, each putative class member would still be subject to all of the same defenses and liability limitations that eRent and Base have already asserted in the class action.  

Finally, if enough people opt out, eRent and/or Base can withdraw from the settlement, which could prevent ANY class members from getting funds.  Unless you wish to pay thousands of dollars to likely end up with nothing, and wait more than a year to get there, then opting out does not make any sense. 

Ian Hicks