Plaintiffs Respond to State Farm Request to Review Class Action Suit

Plaintiffs in a class-action suit against State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. responded October 10 to a request by the insurance company for a stay to have the case reviewed.

State Farm customers brought a class-action suit against the insurance company, originating in 2012, claiming it helped elect a judge and block a billion-dollar award against State Farm.

The suit was certified as a class-action suit following a federal judge’s ruling September 16. State Farm asked the Illinois Southern District of the U.S. District Court on September 30 to review that certification. In their response, the plaintiffs, about 5 million State Farm customers, note “that fact discovery is not yet completed, expert discovery has not yet started, and a trial date has not yet been set. Plaintiffs therefore do not object to the Court vacating the current October 15, 2016 deadline for meeting and conferring on specific notice plans, and submitting a joint or competing notice plans.”  However, the plaintiffs proposed any stay of notice discovery and class notice last no longer at least six months prior to trial. Further, the plaintiffs made clear they “ … do not agree that any stay relating to class notice should be untethered to the scheduling of trial in this case.”

The class-action suit accuses State Farm of defrauding the plaintiffs by secretly bankrolling Lloyd Karmeier’s 2004 campaign. Further, the case alleges, State Farm “ … created and conducted [a] RICO enterprise … to enable State Farm to evade payment of a $1.05 billion judgment affirmed in favor of approximately 4.7 million State Farm policyholders by the Illinois Appellate Court.”

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