In a class action, one or more people known as a Plaintiffs or a Class Representatives sue on behalf of all people who have similar claims. The people included in the class action are called a Class and the Class consists of Class Members. The claims of the Class and Class Members are resolved together by one court. Class Members have the option to exclude themselves from (or opt out of) the Class, object to the settlement, submit a Form W-9 to receive a settlement payment or do nothing. If a Class Member elects to be excluded from the Class, they will not be bound by the results of this class action and will not receive any benefits from the settlement. More information regarding Class Member’s rights and the steps that need to be taken to exercise those rights is provided below.
In this case, Mililani Mauka homeowners John Pupuhi Baker, Jr., individually and as Trustee of the Revocable Trust of John Pupuhi Baker, Jr., Diane T. Baker, individually and as Trustee of the Revocable Trust of Diane Theresa Baker, Branden H. Baker, and Kim Salva Cruz Baker have been appointed by the Court as Class Representatives to represent the Class.
This lawsuit is about the high wind protection systems installed in certain Mililani Mauka homes. Plaintiffs claim that the high wind protection systems did not comply with the applicable building codes.
Castle & Cooke denies all of Plaintiffs’ claims and allegations in the lawsuit.
You received the Notice because records indicate that you own a home built by Castle & Cooke in the Mililani Mauka development, located in the City and County of Honolulu, Island of Oahu that was completed during the time period of, and with the high wind protection systems at issue in, this class action, and therefore you are included in the settlement as a MM-Wind Class Member.Top
The Court did not decide in favor of Plaintiffs or Defendants. Instead, both sides agreed to a settlement. That way, they avoid the cost of further years of complex litigation, including additional Court and Arbitration proceedings on critical issues, and the people affected will get compensation in exchange for a release of claims. All parties think the settlement represents the best for everyone and represents a fair, reasonable, and adequate resolution of the MM-Wind Lawsuit.Top
A court authorized the Notice because you have a right to know about the proposed settlement of this class action lawsuit and about all of your options before the Court decides whether to approve the settlement. The Notice explains the lawsuit, the settlement, your legal rights, what benefits are available, and who may qualify for them.
Judge Jeffrey P. Crabtree of the Circuit Court of the First Circuit, State of Hawai‘i is overseeing this class action. The case is known as Baker, et al. v. Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii, Inc., et al., No. 11-1-1524-07 JHC (originally assigned Civil No. 11-1-1524-07 PWB). The homeowners who sued are called the Plaintiffs. The company they sued, Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii, Inc., is called the “Defendant” or “Castle & Cooke.”
You are included in the settlement as a MM-Wind Class Member if you are an individual or entity homeowners, or homeowners’ associations whose members consist of such individual and entity homeowners, who on the date of Final Order and Judgment own a home or homes whose construction was completed on or after July 20, 2001 with wind protection systems in the housing development known as Mililani Mauka, located in the City and County of Honolulu, Island of Oahu.Top
Yes, you are not included in the MM-Wind Class or settlement if you are any judicial officer who has presided or will preside over this case.Top
A $10 million MM-Wind Settlement Fund will be created. Of the $10 million Settlement Fund, $5,892,356.68 will be used to pay MM-Wind Class Members, up to $56,522.00 will be used to pay the costs associated with administering the settlement, and up to $4,051,121.32 will be used to pay attorneys’ fees, costs, and applicable Hawai‘i General Excise tax for Oahu, as well as service awards to the Class Representatives.
If any money remains in the MM-Wind Settlement Fund after making the payments described above, it will be given to a local charitable entity or entities serving Oahu that are related to affordable housing issues and would qualify for cy pres distributions as approved by the Court.
The $5,892,356.68 will be divided equally among all MM-Wind Class Structures and paid to the qualifying MM-Wind Class Members. This means for each MM-Wind Class Structure, the owners at the time of Final Order and Judgment will receive an estimated payment of at least $2,500.00.
MM-Wind Class Structures means any residential dwelling unit, whether a single-family home or individual townhome, located in the Mililani Mauka Development owned by a MM-Wind Class Member on the date of the Final Judgment.
You do not have to do anything now to receive a settlement payment. After the settlement is approved and becomes final, you will be mailed a Notice of final approval and a Form W-9. You must complete and return the Form W-9 online or by mail to receive your settlement payment.
Notice of final approval and Form W-9s will not be issued before June 10, 2019. If you do not receive a Notice of final approval and Form W-9, or if you need to obtain one or more additional Forms W-9, you may download them from www.MililaniWind.com, call 1-866-652-8231, or write to: MM-Wind Settlement Administrator, P.O. Box 404000, Louisville, KY 40233-4000.
The Court will hold a hearing on July 10, 2019 to decide whether to approve the MM-Wind Settlement. Notice of final approval and Form W-9s will be issued approximately 10 days after Judge Crabtree approves the settlement and any appeals are resolved. You will have 60 days to complete and return or submit your Form W-9.Top
Payments will be issued if and when Judge Crabtree approves the settlement and any appeals are resolved, the Notice of final approval and Form W-9 are issued and the deadline to submit completed Form W-9s has passed. Please be patient.Top
Unless you exclude yourself, you are staying in the MM-Wind Class. If the settlement is approved and becomes final, all of the Court’s orders will apply to you and legally bind you. That means you won’t be able to sue, continue to sue, or be part of any other lawsuit against Castle & Cooke and related parties about the legal issues made in this case and released by the Settlement Agreement. The specific rights you are giving up are detailed in paragraphs 58-63 of the Settlement Agreement and Release, available here.Top
To exclude yourself from the MM-Wind Class, you must send a letter by mail saying that you want to be excluded from MM-Wind Settlement in Baker, et al. v. Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii, Inc., et al. Be sure to include: your full name, current address, and telephone number; the address of the MM-Wind Class Structure that qualifies you as a MM-Wind Class Member, if different than your current address; and identify the owner of the MM-Wind Class Structure. You must mail your exclusion request postmarked no later than June 15, 2019 to:
MM-Wind Settlement Administrator
P.O. Box 404000
Louisville, KY, 40233-4000Top
No. If you exclude yourself from the settlement, you are telling the Court that you don’t want to be part of the MM-Wind Class. You can only get a settlement payment if you stay in the MM-Wind Class and submit a valid Form W-9.Top
No. Unless you exclude yourself, you are giving up the right to sue Castle & Cooke and related parties for the claims that this settlement resolves.Top
Yes. The Court has appointed Melvin Y. Agena of the Law Offices of Melvin Y. Agena, Glenn K. Sato of the Law Offices of Glenn K. Sato, and Kenneth S. Kasdan, Graham B. LippSmith, and Celene Chan Andrews of Kasdan LippSmith LLC as MM-Wind Class Counsel to represent you and other MM-Wind Class Members. You will not be charged for these lawyers. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, you may hire one at your own expense.Top
MM-Wind Class Counsel will ask the Court for payment of attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses of up to $4,051,121.32. This amount includes up to $3,333,333.33 in MM-Wind Class Counsel’s attorneys’ fees (not to exceed 33.33% of the MM-Wind Settlement Fund); up to $157,066.67 in applicable Hawai‘i General Excise Tax for Oahu on MM-Wind Class Counsel’s attorneys’ fees (not to exceed 4.712% of the attorneys’ fees awarded); up to $556,721.32 for litigation costs; and up to $4,000.00 in total Class Representative incentive awards (not to exceed $2,000.00 per Class Representative Structure). If approved by the Court, these amounts will be paid from the $10 million MM-Wind Settlement Fund.Top
If you are a MM-Wind Class Member and do not request to be excluded, you can object to the MM-Wind Settlement. You can give reasons why you think the Court should not approve it. The Court will consider your views before making a decision. To object, you must send a letter saying that you object to the MM-Wind Settlement in Baker, et al. v. Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii, Inc., et al. Be sure to include: your name, current address, and telephone number; the address of the Class Structure giving rise to standing to make an Objection and establish your status as a MM-Wind Class Member, if different from your current address; identify the owner of the MM-Wind Class Structure; a statement indicating that you have reviewed the definitions of the Class and understand that you are a member of the MM-Wind Class and that you have not opted out of the MM-Wind Class; the reasons why you object to the settlement; and any documents related to your objection. Mail the objection to the MM-Wind Settlement Administrator postmarked no later than June 15, 2019:
MM-Wind Settlement Administrator
P.O. Box 404000
Louisville, KY, 40233-4000Top
Objecting is simply telling the Court that you don’t like something about the settlement. You can object only if you stay in the MM-Wind Class. Excluding yourself is telling the Court that you don’t want to be part of the Class. If you exclude yourself, you have no basis to object because the settlement no longer affects you.Top
The Court will hold a Final Approval Hearing at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, July 10, 2019 at the Circuit Court of the First Circuit, State of Hawai‘i, 1111 Alakea Street, Honolulu Hi 96813, in Room 5c. At this hearing, the Court will consider whether the settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate. If there are objections, the Court will consider them. Judge Crabtree will listen to people who have asked to speak at the hearing. The Court may also decide how much to pay MM-Wind Class Counsel. At or after the hearing, the Court will decide whether to approve the settlement. We do not know how long these decisions will take.Top
No. MM-Wind Class Counsel will answer any questions Judge Crabtree may have. But, you are welcome to come at your own expense. If you send in an objection, you don’t have to come to Court to talk about it. As long as you mailed your written objection on time, the Court will consider it. You may also pay your own lawyer to attend, but it’s not necessary.Top
You may ask the Court for permission to speak at the Final Approval Hearing. To do so, you must send a letter saying that it is your “Notice of Intention to Appear in Baker, et al. v. Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii, Inc., et al.” Be sure to include your name, address, telephone number, and your signature. Your Notice of Intention to Appear must be postmarked no later than June 15, 2019, and be sent to the MM-Wind Settlement Administrator at the address in Question 19. You cannot speak at the hearing if you excluded yourself.Top
If you do nothing, you will not get any money from this settlement and you won’t be able to start a lawsuit, continue with a lawsuit, or be part of any other lawsuit against Castle & Cooke or related parties about the legal issues in this case, ever again.Top
The Notice summarizes the proposed settlement. More details are in the Settlement Agreement and Release, available here. If you have questions, call 1-866-652-8231 toll-free or write to the MM-Wind Settlement Administrator, P.O. Box 404000, Louisville, KY 40233-4000Top