Staunton Lodge No. 177, A.F. & A.M. v. Pekin Insurance Company
Illinois Property Depreciation Settlement
No. 2020-L-001297

Frequently Asked Questions


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  • A Court authorized the Notice because you have a right to know about a proposed settlement of this class action, including the right to claim money, and about your options regarding this settlement before the Court decides whether to give "Final Approval" to the settlement. If the Court approves the parties' Settlement Agreement, and if any appeals are resolved in favor of the settlement, then payments will be made to those who qualify and timely submit a valid claim. The notice explains the lawsuit, the settlement, your legal rights, what benefits are available who may be eligible for them, and how to get them.

    The Circuit Court for the Third Judicial Circuit of Madison County, Illinois is overseeing this class action.  The case is called Staunton Lodge No. 177, A.F. & A.M. v. Pekin Insurance Company, Case No. 2020-L-001297.  The entity that sued is called the “Plaintiff,” and the company they sued is called the “Defendant.”

  • The settlement includes Defendant Pekin Insurance Company and The Farmers Automobile Insurance Association (collectively referred to herein as "The Insurance Companies").

  • The lawsuit claims that the Insurance Companies improperly deducted depreciation attributable to the costs of labor when adjusting some insurance claims in Illinois. The Insurance Companies have maintained that they paid claims reasonably and appropriately and denied all allegations that they acted wrongfully or unlawfully.

  • In a class action, one or more persons or organizations called "Class Representatives" (in this case, Staunton Lodge No. 177, A.F. & A.M.) sued on behalf of others who have similar claims. All of those included are a "Class" or "Class Members." One court resolves the issues for all Class Members, except for those who exclude themselves from the Class.

  • The Court did not decide in favor of the Plaintiff or the Insurance Companies and has not found that the Insurance Companies did anything wrong. Instead, both sides agreed to settle. That way, the parties avoid the cost of litigation, a trial and, potentially, an appeal, and the people and organizations who qualify will get compensation. The Class Representative and its attorneys think the settlement is best for all Class Members. The settlement does not mean that the Insurance Companies did anything wrong, no trial has occurred, and no merits determinations have been made.

  • To see if you are eligible for benefits from the settlement, you first have to determine if you are a Class Member. 

  • If you received a Notice, then you were identified as someone who is likely to be member of the Class. The Class includes: All policyholders under any Commercial or Personal Lines property insurance policy issued by the Insurance Companies, who made a Structural Loss claim for property located in the State of Illinois during the applicable Class Periods, that resulted in an ACV Payment from which Nonmaterial Depreciation was withheld, or that would have resulted in an ACV Payment but for the withholding of Nonmaterial Depreciation causing the loss to drop below the applicable deductible.

    A "Structural Loss" means physical damage to a home, building, manufactured home, condo, rental dwelling, or other structure in Illinois while covered by any Personal Lines or Commercial Lines insurance policy issued by the Insurance Companies.

    "Covered Loss" means a first party insurance claim for Structural Loss, as defined below, that (a) occurred during the Class Period, and (b) resulted in an ACV Payment by the Insurance Companies, or would have resulted in an ACV Payment but for the deduction of Nonmaterial Depreciation.

    "Nonmaterial Depreciation" means 63% of Depreciation.

    "Depreciation" means the total estimated amount subtracted by Pekin or Farmers from replacement cost value to calculate actual cash value in making a ACV Payment. Nonmaterial Depreciation and material depreciation are components of Depreciation.

    The Class Period means the following time-period:

    For Illinois policyholders of Pekin Insurance Company or The Farmers Automobile Insurance Association, with Structural Loss claims with dates of loss occurred on or after September 10, 2018, and who provided notice of loss to Pekin on or before July 30, 2020

  • Excluded from the Class are: (a) policyholders whose claims arose under policy forms, endorsements, or riders expressly permitting deductions of Nonmaterial Depreciation within the text of the policy form, endorsement or rider, i,e., by express use of the words "depreciation" and "labor"; (b) policyholders who received one or more ACV payments that exhausted the applicable limits of insurance; (c) policyholders whose claims were denied or abandoned without ACV payments; (d) the Insurance Companies and their officers and directors; (e) members of the judiciary and their staff to whom this action is assigned and their immediate families; and (f) Class Counsel and their immediate families (collectively, "Exclusions").

  • If you are not sure whether you are included in the Class, you may call the toll free number 1-855-579-1267 with questions or visit the Important Documents Page.

  • Class Members, who complete and sign a claim form and timely mail it to the proper address, or submit the claim form by uploading it on this website, may be eligible for a payment. Claim Forms must be submitted or timely postmarked by November 22, 2022. Under the settlement, the Insurance Companies have agreed to pay Class Members, who timely submit valid claims, determined as follows:

    (a) for Class Members to whom all Nonmaterial Depreciation has not been paid (which is a majority of Class Members), 115% of the net estimated Nonmaterial Depreciation that was withheld from the ACV Payments and not subsequently paid with the "net estimated Nonmaterial Depreciation." This is calculated by determining the total depreciation (material and non-material depreciation) attendant to a claim and multiplying that figure by 0.63. The average claim payment for these Class Members is estimated to be $2,728.00 If you fall in this group, your claim will most likely be different than this amount and dependent upon your own claim;

    (b) for Class Members who recovered all outstanding Depreciation through the claim process, a one-time payment ranging from $34.22 to $130.74, depending on the type of your property insurance policy. The average claim for these "interest only" Class Members is approximately $43.39, but your payment will be dependent upon the type of insurance policy you purchased.

    You must submit a claim form in order to determine whether you are eligible for and the amount of your settlement payment. If you do not, you will not receive a settlement payment. For additional details on the payment terms, please see the Settlement Agreement, or call toll free 1-855-579-1267.

  • To find out whether you are eligible for a payment, you must complete and sign a claim form truthfully, accurately, and completely to the best of your ability. You must mail the completed claim form to the following address, postmarked no later than November 22, 2022:

    Staunton Lodge vs. Pekin Insurance Company
    c/o JND Legal Administration 
    PO Box 91317
    Seattle, WA 98111

    You can also upload to this website a signed, scanned copy of a completed claim form before midnight Eastern Daylight Time on November 22, 2022. A copy of the claim form was mailed with the Notice. You may obtain an additional claim form by calling the Settlement Administrator at 1-855-579-1267 or visiting the Important Documents page. If you sign a claim form as the representative of a deceased or incapacitated Class Member, you must also submit written proof that you are the legally authorized representative. If you are a contractor to whom an insurance claim was properly assigned by a policyholder, you must submit written proof of the assignment with the filed claim form.

  • The Court granted Final Approval of the settlement, and if any appeals are resolved in favor of the settlement, then payments will be mailed to eligible Class Members after the claims administration process is completed. This process can take time, so please be patient.

  • Unless you excluded yourself, you are staying in the Class, and that means you can't individually sue the Insurance Companies and the Released Persons over the claims settled in this case relating to deductions of Nonmaterial Depreciation from payments Covered Losses. It also means that all of the Court's orders will apply to you and legally bind you.

    If you submit a Claim Form, or if you do nothing and stay in the Class, you will agree to release all the released Claims against Released Persons. "Released Claims" and "Related Persons" are defined in the Settlement Agreement, which you can request by calling 1-855-579-1267.

  • If you don't want a payment from this settlement, and/or if you want to keep the right to individually sue about the issues in this case, then you must take steps to get out of the settlement. This is called excluding yourself from-or "opting out" of-the Class.

  • The deadline to exclude yourself from the Settlement was September 6, 2022 and has passed.

  • No. Unless you excluded yourself, you give up any right to sue the Insurance Company for the claims that this settlement resolves. You needed to exclude yourself from the Class to individually sue the Insurance Companies over the claims resolved by this settlement. Remember, the exclusions deadline was September 6, 2022 and has passed.

  • No. If you excluded yourself from the settlement, do not submit a Claim Form to ask for a payment.

  • The Court appointed the following law firms to represent you and other Class Members as Class Counsel:

    David T. Butsch
    Christopher E. Roberts
    231 S. Bemiston Ave., Suite 260
    Clayton, MO 63105
    Tel: (314) 863-5700
    Fax: (314) 863-5711

    T. Joseph Snodgrass
    100 South 5th Street, Suite 800
    Minneapolis, MN 55402
    Tel: (612) 448-2600

    Christopher W. Byron
    Christopher J. Petri
    411 St. Louis Street
    Edwardsville, IL 62025
    Phone: (618) 655-0600
    Fax: (618) 655-4004

  • Class Counsel will ask the Court for up to $1,500,000.00 for attorneys' fees and reasonable litigation expenses, and will ask the Court to award the Class Representative $10,000 for its efforts in prosecuting this case (called a service award). The Insurance Companies agreed not to oppose the request for fees, expenses, and service awards up to these amounts. The Court may award less than these amounts. The Insurance Companies will pay these fees, expenses, and services awards in addition to amounts due to Class Members. These payments will not reduce the amount distributed to Class Members. The Insurance Companies will also separately pay the costs to administer the settlement.

  • You can tell the Court if you don't agree with the settlement or some part of it.

  • The deadline to object to the Settlement was September 6, 2022 and has passed.

  • Objecting is simply telling the Court that you don't like something about the settlement. You can object only if you stay in the Class. Excluding yourself is telling the Court that you don't want to be part of the Class of the settlement. If you exclude yourself, you have no basis to object because the case no longer affects you. If you object, and the Court approves the settlement anyway, you will still be legally bound by the result.

  • The Court held a hearing and decided to approve the settlement. You could have attended and asked to speak, but you didn't have to.

  • The Court held a Final Approval Hearing at 9:00 a.m. on October 6, 2022, at the Circuit Court Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois, 155 N. Main Street Edwardsville, Illinois, 62025. At this hearing, the Court considered whether the settlement was fair, reasonable, and adequate. If there were any objections, the Court considered them at that time. After the hearing, the Court decided to approve the settlement.

  • You were not required to attend, and Class Counsel answered any questions that the Court may have had. If you wished to attend the hearing, you could have come at your own expense. You could have also paid your own lawyer to attend, but it was not necessary, unless you chose to have a lawyer appear on your behalf to object to the settlement.

  • If you do nothing, you'll get no payment from this settlement. But, unless you exclude yourself from the settlement, you won't be able to individually sue for the claims resolved in this case.

  • The Class Notice summarizes the proposed settlement. More details are in the Settlement Agreement. If you have questions or if you want to request a copy of the Settlement Agreement, which provides more information, call 1-855-579-1267 or visit the Important Documents page.


For More Information

Visit this website often to get the most up-to-date information.

Staunton Lodge v. Pekin Insurance Settlement
c/o JND Legal Administration
PO Box 91317
Seattle, WA 98111