Frequently Asked Questions

Tuttle, et el. v. Audiophile Music Direct, Inc., et al.

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Stephen J. Tuttle and Dustin Collman (individually and collectively, “Plaintiffs”), on behalf of all members of the Class (known and unknown), have asserted that Defendants violated various laws, including state consumer protection laws. Specifically, Plaintiffs allege that Defendants’ marketing and promotion of MoFi’s Original Master Recording (“OMR”) and Ultradisc One-Step (“One-Step”) series of vinyl records relied on false and misleading claims that the records were produced with “analog-only” methods, without the use of any intervening digital step. Plaintiffs allege that in reality, certain of the MoFi records, namely, the Applicable Records, used a direct stream digital (“DSD”) transfer step in the mastering chain (the “Applicable Records”), the absence of which was a material selling point of “analog-only” records. Plaintiffs allege that by misrepresenting the source and provenance of the Applicable Records, Defendants acted unfairly and deceptively, and breached their contractual obligations to original purchasers. Defendants deny all such allegations and any liability or wrongdoing.
The Court did not decide in favor of Plaintiffs or Defendants. Plaintiffs and Defendants both think they could have prevailed at trial. But there was no trial. Instead, both sides agreed to a Settlement. That way, both sides avoid the costs of a trial and the people affected will get compensation. The Class Representatives and the attorneys think that the Settlement is best for all Class Members.
The Court decided that everyone who fits this description is a Class Member:

All original retail consumers in the United States who, from March 19, 2007, through July 27, 2022 purchased, either directly from a Defendant or other retail merchants, new and unused Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab, Inc. (“MoFi”) vinyl recordings which were marketed by Defendants using the series labeling descriptors “Original Master Recording” and/or “Ultradisc One-Step,” that were sourced from original analog master tapes and which utilized a direct stream digital transfer step in the mastering chain, and provided that said purchasers still own said recordings (the “Applicable Records”). Excluded from the Class are persons who obtained subject Applicable Recordings from other sources.

A list of the Applicable Records is included here.

There are three options. Class Members who submit a timely and valid Settlement Claim Certification Form (the “Claim Form”), Proof of Purchase and Proof of Ownership (as defined in Paragraph 7 below) shall be entitled to receive compensation as follows:

(i) Class Members who choose to return their Applicable Record(s) in their original covers and/or boxes, in complete and undamaged condition except for normal wear and tear shall receive a refund of their actual purchase price (not to exceed 110% of the manufacturer’s suggested retail list price at the time of purchase (“MSRLP”)) plus tax and shipping, in the form of a check or electronic payment (e.g., PayPal, Venmo, etc.) (the “Return Refund).

Class Members who want to keep their Applicable Record(s) shall have the option of receiving, either:

(ii) payment of five percent (5%) of the actual purchase price (not to exceed 110% of the MSRLP) in the form of a check or electronic payment (e.g., PayPal, Venmo, etc.) (the “5% Payment”), or

(iii) a coupon in the amount of ten percent (10%) of the actual purchase price (not to exceed 110% of the MSRLP), redeemable for retail purchase use at Defendant Music Direct’s “musicdirect.com” retail website (the “10% Coupon” or “Coupon”). The Coupon will contain a code that may be used to redeem its full value for one or more retail purchases by the Class Member. Each Coupon, including any unused amounts will expire one hundred and eighty (180) days after issuance (the “Redemption Period”) and shall not be transferable. Coupons may be redeemed in combination on one or more purchases. Any unused amounts will be placed on account for use during the Redemption Period by the Class Member. All MoFi products currently in stock and available for sale shall be available for Coupon redemption along with any and all other products offered for sale at “musicdirect.com.”

Class Members are entitled to designate their preference of a Return Refund, 5% Payment, or 10% Coupon (individually and collectively, a “Settlement Payment”) for each individual Applicable Record on their Claim Form. For purposes of payment security, Class Members can only make the election to receive an (i) electronic Return Refund and/or (ii) electronic 5% Payment, including the designation of form of electronic payment, by filling out the Claim Form on the Settlement Website. All Return Refunds and/or 5% Payments to Class Members will be paid by check mailed to the address designated on the Claim Form unless an election for an electronic payment is timely made by the Class Member on the Settlement Website with designation of form of electronic payment.
 
Class Members must cash their Return Refund and/or 5% Payment checks within one hundred and eighty (180) days after issuance.

For each Applicable Record purchased online directly from either (i) Defendant MoFi’s “mofi.com” website, or (i) Defendant Music Direct’s “musicdirect.com” website, the Class Member’s actual purchase price will be used in calculating the amount of their Return Refund, 5% Payment, or 10% Coupon, as applicable.

For each Applicable Record purchased from retail merchants other than Defendants, the Class Member’s actual purchase price not to exceed 110% of the MSLRP at time of purchase will be used in calculating the amount of their Return Refund, 5% Payment, or 10% Coupon, as applicable. A list of the MSLRPs by date is included here.

If you want to ask for a Settlement Payment, you must completely fill out the Claim Form, which allows Class Members to select (i) a Return Refund, 5% Payment, or 10% Coupon for each Applicable Record, (ii) a check or electronic payment (e.g., Paypal, Venmo, etc.) for Return Refunds or 5% Payments, and (iii) to receive the 10% Coupons by mail or email. If you have not received a Class Member ID you must complete a paper claim form by downloading it here and mailing it to the address below. If you have received a Class Member ID, the Claim Form can be filled out online, and uploaded, along with your Proofs of Purchase and Ownership to the Settlement Website, or emailed, or postal mailed to the Settlement Administrator at the addresses below:

Website

www.audiophilesettlement.com

Email

[email protected]

Postal mail

Tuttle v. Audiophile Music Direct,

c/o Kroll Settlement Administration,

PO Box 5324,

New York, NY 10150-5324.


Do not mail or return Applicable Records to the Settlement Administrator with your Claim Form.

You must submit legible copies of Proof of Purchase and Proof of Ownership with your Claim Form to receive a Settlement Payment.

“Proof of Purchase” means a document showing the amount you paid for your retail purchase of the Applicable Record, the purchase date, and who you purchased it from. Acceptable Proof of Purchase, includes, a receipt, credit card statement, or cancelled check referencing the purchase. However, if you purchased an Applicable Record online directly from either (i) Defendant MoFi’s “mofi.com” website, or (ii) Defendant Music Direct’s “musicdirect.com” website (individually and collectively, a “Direct Purchase”) you just need to provide your name and order number as Proof of Purchase. If you do not have your order number, you will need to provide your name, email address used, and approximate purchase date, for each Applicable Record as Proof of Purchase.

“Proof of Ownership” means proof that you still own and are in possession of the Applicable Record. Applicable Proof of Ownership, includes, for each Applicable Record: 
- (i) the catalog number appearing on the spine of the record cover or box; and legible photos, photocopies, JPEGs, PDFs, or similar copies of both (ii) the individually stamped or hand- written number from the back cover, and (iii) the front cover of the Applicable Record.

If you fail to follow these procedures, you will receive no Settlement Payment, but will be nonetheless bound by any judgments, orders, and releases in this Case. It is very important that you follow these procedures. If you have questions, please contact the Claim Administrator.

Completed Claim Forms and Proof must be uploaded to the Settlement Website, emailed, or postmarked by September 21, 2023. 

Timely-submitted Claim Forms and Proofs will be reviewed by the Settlement Administrator, and all that are properly completed, executed, and timely received will be deemed a “Qualifying Claim Certification Form” entitling the Class Member to a Settlement Payment as elected for each Applicable Record, with the respective amounts calculated by the Settlement Administrator. If a Class Member submits a Claim Form that is incomplete or fails to satisfy the criteria for receiving a Settlement Payment, the Settlement Administrator will notify the Class Member that their Claim Form has been rejected and provide the reasons for rejection, and an opportunity for the Class Member to correct the Claim Form or provide additional Proof.

The Court will decide whether to approve the Settlement. If the Court approves the Settlement, after that, there may be appeals. It’s always uncertain whether these appeals can be resolved and resolving them can take time, perhaps more than a year. Settlement Payments to Qualifying Class Members will be issued only after Settlement approval by the Court and the resolution of any appeals. Please be patient.
Unless you exclude yourself, you are staying in the Class, and that means you can’t sue, continue to sue, or be part of any other lawsuit against Defendants or other entities released in the Settlement Agreement regarding any of the legal issues in this Case. It also means that all of the Court’s orders will apply to you and legally bind you.
If you do not wish to participate in this Settlement, you must notify Class Counsel in writing of your intent to be excluded. Your election to opt-out must contain the following information and be signed by the Class Member opting-out: (i) the name of the Class Member, (ii) the current address of the Class Member, and (iii) the date signed. You must mail your signed exclusion request, postmarked no later than August 22, 2023 to Class Counsel: Duncan C. Turner, Esq., Badgley Mullins Turner, PLLC, 19929 Ballinger Way NE, Suite 200, Seattle, WA 98155.

If you ask to be excluded, you will not get a Settlement Payment and you cannot object to the Settlement. You will not be legally bound by anything that happens in this Case. You may be able to sue Defendants or the other entities released in the Settlement Agreement in the future regarding the legal issues in this Case.

No. If you exclude yourself, do not send in a Claim Form to ask for a Settlement Payment.

The law firm of Badgley Mullins Turner, PLLC, 19929 Ballinger Way NE, Suite 200, Seattle, WA 98155, represents you and other Class Members. These lawyers are called Class Counsel. 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.

Class Counsel will ask the Court to approve payment of attorneys’ fees and expenses of $290,000. The fees would pay Class Counsel for investigating the facts, litigating the Case, and negotiating the Settlement. In addition, Class Counsel will ask for payments of $10,000 each to Stephen J. Tuttle and Dustin Collman for their services as Class Representatives. These payments are coming directly from the Defendants and will not reduce the funds available to the Class.
If you are a Class Member, you can object to the Settlement if you don’t like any part of it. You can give reasons why you think the Court should not approve it. The Court will consider your views. To object, you must prepare a letter stating your reasons for objecting to the Settlement, and include your name, address, telephone number, and signature, and the case caption “Stephen J. Tuttle, et al., v. Audiophile Music Direct, Inc., et al., Case No. 2:22-cv-01081-JLR.” You must mail copies of this letter to the Clerk of the Court and the Class Counsel, at the following addresses:

Court

Clerk of the Court

U.S. District Court

700 Stewart St., Suite 2310,

Seattle, WA 98101

Class Counsel

Badgley Mullins Turner

19929 Ballinger Way NE,

Ste. 200,

Seattle, WA 98155

The objection must be mailed by August 22, 2023.

Objectors who fail to properly or timely file their objections with the Court, or mail them as provided above, shall not be heard during the Fairness Hearing, nor shall their objections be considered by the Court.

Objecting is telling the Court that you do not agree with the Settlement, in whole or in part. 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. If you exclude yourself, you have no basis to object because the Case no longer affects you.

No. Unless you exclude yourself, you give up any right to sue Defendants and the other entities released in the Settlement Agreement for the claims that this Settlement resolves. If you have a pending lawsuit involving the same claims that this Settlement resolves, speak to your lawyer in that case immediately. You must exclude yourself from this Class to continue your own lawsuit. If you have a pending lawsuit on matters not addressed in this Settlement, you may continue that lawsuit against Defendants.

The District Court will hold a hearing to decide whether to approve the Settlement. The Fairness Hearing will be held on October 30, 2023 at 9am PST at the Court, 700 Stewart Street, Court Room #14106, Seattle, WA 98101.The court may change the date for the final approval hearing. If the court changes the hearing date, notice of such change shall be posted on the settlement website. At this hearing, the Court will consider whether the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate. If there are objections or requests to be heard, the Court may consider them at the hearing. The Court may also decide the amount of attorneys’ fees and costs to be paid to Plaintiffs’ Class Counsel.

No. Class Counsel will answer questions that the Court may have. But, you are welcome to come at your own expense. If you send 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.

You may ask the Court for permission to speak at the Fairness Hearing. To do so, you must send a letter saying that it is your “Notice of Intention to Appear” in Stephen J. Tuttle, et al., v. Audiophile Music Direct, Inc., et al., Case No. 22-cv-01081. Be sure to include your name, address, telephone number, and signature. Your Notice of Intention to Appear must be postmarked no later than October 6, 2023 and sent to the Clerk of the Court and the Class Counsel, at the addresses below: 


Court

Clerk of the Court

U.S. District Court

700 Stewart St., Suite 2310,

Seattle, WA 98101

Class Counsel

Badgley Mullins Turner,

19929 Ballinger Way NE,

Ste. 200,

Seattle, WA 98155

You cannot speak at the hearing if you have excluded yourself.

If you do nothing, you will not get a Settlement Payment from this Settlement. But, unless you exclude yourself, you won’t be able to start a lawsuit, continue with a lawsuit, or be part of any other lawsuit against Defendants about the legal issues in this Case, ever again.
This is only a summary of the Case, the claims asserted, the Class, the Settlement, and process for getting a Settlement Payment. You may seek the advice and guidance of your own private attorney, at your own expense, if you desire. For more detailed information, you may review the Settlement Agreement, pleadings, records, and other papers on file in this Litigation in the Documents section of the Settlement Website. If you wish to communicate with Class Counsel identified above, you may do so by writing to Duncan C. Turner, Esq., at Badgley Mullins Turner, PLLC, 19929 Ballinger Way NE, Suite 200, Seattle, WA 98155. Alternatively, you may call the offices of the firm at 206-621-6566, or email the firm at [email protected]
This website is authorized by the Court, supervised by counsel and controlled by Kroll Settlement Administration, the Settlement Administrator approved by the Court. This is the only authorized website for this case.
Call
833-630-6697
Mail
Tuttle v. Audiophile Music Direct

c/o Kroll Settlement Administration, LLC
PO Box 5324
New York, NY 10150-5324

Documents

Please read for a full explanation of the settlement and your options and all applicable timelines.

Contact

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Submit Claim

Click here to safely and securely submit a Claim Form.

Important Dates

  • Exclusion Deadline

    Tuesday, August 22, 2023 You must complete and mail your request for exclusion form so that it is postmarked no later than August 22, 2023
  • Objection Deadline

    Tuesday, August 22, 2023 You must mail your objection(s) so that it is postmarked no later than August 22, 2023
  • Claim Form Deadline

    Thursday, September 21, 2023 You must submit your Claim Form online no later than September 21, 2023, or mail your completed paper Claim Form so that it is postmarked no later than September 21, 2023
  • Final Approval Hearing Date

    Monday, October 30, 2023 The Final Approval Hearing is scheduled for October 30, 2023 at 9am PST. Please check this website for updates

Important Documents

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