Important Update For Class Members That Elected To Receive Their Award Via A Pre-Paid Card: The card vendor has confirmed that cards will be mailing to individuals before the end of March 2022. Please watch your mail carefully. See FAQ 11 for additional information.
If between April 25, 2010 and June 15, 2015, the District of Columbia, through its Metropolitan Police Department, either seized your vehicle for a forfeiture determination and held your vehicle for more than thirty days; or seized your currency for civil forfeiture and did not provide you with adequate notice within one year, you may be entitled to receive money.
What is this lawsuit about?
Hoyte, et al. v. District of Columbia is a class action lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. The lawsuit challenges the way the District provided notice to vehicle owners and owners of currency seized between April 25, 2010 and June 15, 2015, for forfeiture who did not receive prompt notice. The plaintiffs and the defendant have written down their agreement in a document called a “Settlement Agreement.” On October 6, 2020, the judge granted preliminary approval and on March 9, 2021 the Final Approval Hearing was held virtually via video. The Settlement was given final court approval on April 9, 2021 and the subsequent 30-day appeal period has been fulfilled with no appeals being initiated. This means that the Settlement is now considered “Effective”.
Who is included?
There are two potential classes involved in this case, the Vehicle Forfeiture Class and the Forfeiture Notice Class.
Vehicle Forfeiture Class: You are a member of this class if the District of Columbia, through its Metropolitan Police Department, seized your vehicle for a forfeiture determination pursuant to one of its civil forfeiture statutes and held your vehicle for more than thirty days (or more than 15 but less than 30 days if the vehicle was not held as evidence) at any time from April 25, 2010 through June 15, 2015.
Forfeiture Notice Class: You are a member of the this class if the District seized your currency for civil forfeiture pursuant to one of its civil forfeiture statutes at any time from April 25, 2010 through June 15, 2015, did not return it, and did not provide you with adequate notice within one year.
What Benefits are Available?
To qualify for a payment from the settlement, you needed to complete and submit a claim form to the Settlement Administrator so that it was received no later than March 22, 2021. The filing deadline passed on March 22, 2021 at midnight Pacific time.
Each member of the Vehicle Forfeiture Class whose vehicle was held more than 30 days will receive for each compensable over-detention day (that is, for each day after the first 30 day grace period) $30 if their vehicle was a standard vehicle or $50 if their vehicle was a specialty vehicle (as classified by Plaintiffs’ expert based on rental car industry classifications), except that no Vehicle Forfeiture Class member whose vehicle was held more than 30 days will receive less than $250, regardless of vehicle type and number of detention days, subject to adjustment as described in FAQ 8.
Each Forfeiture Notice Class Member whose money was seized during the Class Period (and not returned by the District) will receive 75% of the amount seized by the District for forfeiture, subject to adjustment as described in FAQ 8.
Settlement Class Member payments for either class may be reduced if the amounts to be paid for all valid claims in that class is greater than the amount set aside for that class as described in FAQ 8.