Pilot class action settlement proceeding with no formal objections filed by truckers

Federal 'fairness' hearing scheduled next week

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - A preliminary settlement in a federal class action lawsuit involving Jimmy Haslam's Pilot Flying J Travel Center has generated no formal objections filed by trucking companies owed millions in fuel rebates.

Court documents filed by Pilot Flying J reveal that "no class member" chose to object  to the terms of the settlement that would pay trucking companies 100 percent of fuel rebates that are owed, plus six percent interest.

Pilot estimates it will repay in excess of $55 million to trucking companies whose accounts were shorted.

In addition, Pilot said "approximately one percent of the settlement class has chosen to opt out of the settlement."

The motion was filed in advance of a Nov. 25 "fairness" hearing that could grant final approval to the proposed settlement agreement reach last July between Pilot Flying J and trucking companies.

The number of those choosing to "opt out" represents "59 unique members," although Pilot has said that figure includes approximately 150 individual accounts.

Trucking companies that chose to "opt out" can pursue individual lawsuits and there are at least 19 trucking companies that have already filed civil complaints claiming they were cheated of promised fuel rebates.

In a motion filed with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, Pilot argues that the proposed  settlement is fair, reasonable and adequate".

In addition, Pilot predicts "it is a near certainty" that trucking companies "would not receive any greater benefits than will be provided by this settlement."

Pilot said it has mailed notices to 6,146 trucking companies that had accounts with the company.

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