Frequently Asked Questions
Why was this notice issued?
A Court has established, or “certified,” this case as a class action. The lawsuit may affect you if you received prerecorded debt collection calls by or on behalf of DIRECTV on your cellular telephone after May 9, 2008. If so, you have legal rights and options before the Court decides whether the claims in this case are correct. The notice has been approved by the Court and explains these things.
Judge Dolly M. Gee of the United States District Court for the Central District of California is overseeing this case. The case is known as Jenny Brown v. DIRECTV, LLC, Case No. 2:13-cv-01170. The person who sued is called the Plaintiff. The company she is suing, DIRECTV, is called the Defendant.
The parties have a dispute about whether DIRECTV is responsible for the loss of certain collection agency calling records. DIRECTV believes that the collection agencies should be responsible for keeping their own records, but without conceding it did anything wrong and to resolve this dispute without involving the Court, DIRECTV has agreed to pay up to $350,000 of the cost of issuing this notice. Plaintiff and her counsel received no compensation from this payment, rather all monies went to the cost of notice.
What is a class action?
In a class action, one or more people called Class Representatives sue on behalf of people who have similar claims. All these people are called class members. One court resolves the issues for all class members, except for those who exclude themselves from the Class.
The Court decided that this lawsuit should be a class action and move towards trial because the Court concluded that it meets the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure Rule 23, which governs class actions filed in United States federal courts. More information about why the Court is allowing this lawsuit to be a class action is in the Court’s Class Certification Order.
Is there any money available now?
No. The Court has not yet decided whether DIRECTV did anything wrong, nor have the two sides agreed to settle the case, so there is no money or benefits available to the Class, and no guarantee that there ever will be. If money or other benefits become available, class members may have to take other steps, such as submitting a claim form, in order to get a share. You can stay informed of the progress of this case by visiting this website or by calling 1-855-951-1511.
What the Lawsuit is About
What is this lawsuit about?
In this lawsuit, the Plaintiff says that DIRECTV, on its own and through various debt collectors, made debt collection calls using prerecorded messages to the cellular telephones of individuals who were not DIRECTV customers. Plaintiff believes these calls violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, or TCPA. DIRECTV denies the allegations in the lawsuit and denies that they acted improperly or did anything wrong. You can review the Fourth Amended Complaint on the Important Documents page of this website.
What is the TCPA?
The TCPA is a federal law that attempts to prevent businesses or other institutions from making certain kinds of automated calls. In particular, the TCPA makes it illegal to make a debt collection call using a prerecorded message to a cellular telephone in most circumstances unless the calling party has the prior express consent to call the recipient of the call.
What is Plaintiff asking for?
The Plaintiff is asking the Court for:
- An order prohibiting DIRECTV from violating the TCPA in the future;
- Up to $500.00 for each and every call that violated the TCPA, payable to each of the persons called by or on behalf of DIRECTV or up to $1,500.00 for each call that DIRECTV made willfully or knowingly in violation of the TCPA;
- The costs of bringing this suit, including reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs; and
- All other legal and equitable relief to which Plaintiff and class members may be entitled which the Court deems proper.
More information about what Plaintiff says and what she is trying to get for class members is in the Fourth Amended Complaint.
What does DIRECTV say?
DIRECTV denies the claims and allegations in the lawsuit. DIRECTV also denies that the calls made by itself and collection agencies collecting on DIRECTV accounts violated the TCPA, denies that the case is appropriate to treat as a class action, and says that, in any event, DIRECTV should not be held responsible for the actions of third-party collection agencies. More information about what DIRECTV says is in the Answer to Plaintiff’s Fourth Amended Complaint by Defendant DIRECTV.
Has the Court decided who is right?
Not yet. The Court has not yet decided whether the Plaintiff or DIRECTV is right. By certifying the Class and ordering that this Notice be provided, the Court has not decided whether the Plaintiff will win or lose. The Plaintiff must still prove her case. Your job right now, if you received these calls and were not a DIRECTV customer, is to decide whether you want to stay in this case (by doing nothing) or exclude yourself.
Who is in the Class
How do I know if I am part of this?
The Court decided that everyone who fits the following description is a class member:
All persons residing within the United States who, within four years prior to and after the filing of this action, received a non-emergency telephone call(s) from DIRECTV and/or its third-party debt collectors regarding a debt allegedly owed to DIRECTV, to a cellular phone through the use of an artificial or prerecorded voice, and who has not been a DIRECTV customer at any time since October 1, 2004.
I’m still not sure if I am included.
If you are still not sure whether you are included, call toll free 1-855-951-1511, email Info@DTVPrerecordClassAction.com, or write to DIRECTV Prerecord TCPA, c/o Class Administrator, 1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210, Philadelphia, PA 19103, for more information.
However, neither DIRECTV, the debt collectors it hired, nor Plaintiff has a “list” of phone numbers that are included in the class.
If you received a prerecorded message telephone call, to your cell phone, from or on behalf of DIRECTV collecting a debt owed to DIRECTV, and you were not a customer, you are a class member.
If you are a class member, you have to decide whether to stay in the Class or whether to exclude yourself by no later than July 18, 2021, which is before a possible trial.
Your Rights and Options
What happens if I do nothing at all?
If you are a class member, by doing nothing you will stay in the Class. If you stay in, you will be legally bound by all of the decisions that Class Counsel and the Court make, and if the Plaintiff obtains money or other benefits — either as a result of the trial or a settlement — you may be able to receive a share. If the Court finds in favor of DIRECTV, you will also be bound by that decision. However, whether the Plaintiff wins or loses, you will not be able to sue, or continue to sue, DIRECTV about the legal claims in this case, ever again.
What happens if I exclude myself?
If you exclude yourself from the Class, and the Class gets any money or other benefits, you will not be able to get any of that money or those benefits. However, if you exclude yourself, you will not be legally bound by the Court’s judgments in this case and you will be able to sue DIRECTV on your own about the same legal claims that are involved in this case, now or in the future, to the extent you have claims against DIRECTV.
If you do pursue your own lawsuit after you exclude yourself, you’ll have to hire and pay your own lawyer for that case, and you’ll have to prove your claims without the benefit of the work performed by the lawyers in this class action.
How do I request to be excluded?
To exclude yourself, you must submit an online “Opt-Out” Request, or by calling 1-855-951-1511. Be sure to include your name, address, and telephone number. You must submit your Opt-Out Request online by July 18, 2021, or mail your Opt-Out Request postmarked by July 18, 2021, to: DIRECTV Prerecord TCPA Class Opt-Out, PO Box 58220 Philadelphia, PA 19102.
The Lawyers Representing You
Do class members have a lawyer in this case?
Yes. The Court appointed the law firms of Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP; Meyer Wilson Co., LPA; and Burke Law Offices, LLC; to represent all class members, including you if you are in the class. Together, the lawyers are called Class Counsel. You do not have to pay Class Counsel. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, and have that lawyer appear in court for you in this case, you may hire one at your own expense.
How will the lawyers be paid?
Although this case was filed in 2013 and has been litigated since that time, Class Counsel have not been paid any money yet. Only if they obtain money or benefits for the Class will they ask the Court for fees and expenses. If the Court grants their request, the fees and expenses would be deducted from any money obtained for the Class.
Should I get my own lawyer?
If you are in the Class, you do not need to hire your own lawyer because Class Counsel is working on your behalf. But, if you want your own lawyer, you will have to pay that lawyer. For example, you can ask him or her to appear in court for you if you want someone other than Class Counsel to speak for you.
How and when will the Court decide who is right?
If the case is not dismissed or settled, the Plaintiff will have to prove her claims at a trial. The Final Pre-Trial Conference is scheduled for February 2, 2022. Trial is scheduled for March 1, 2022. If there is a trial, the jury will hear all of the evidence, so that a decision can be reached about whether the Plaintiff or DIRECTV is right about the claims in the lawsuit. There is no guarantee that the Plaintiff will win any money or benefits for the Class.
Do I have to come to the trial?
No. Class Counsel will present the case for the Plaintiff and class members, and the lawyers for DIRECTV will present its defenses. You and/or your own lawyer are welcome to come, at your own expense. Check this website or email Info@DTVPrerecordedClassAction.com and ask to be kept informed of the trial schedule.
Will I get money after the trial?
If the Plaintiff obtains money or benefits as a result of summary judgment, trial, or a settlement, you will be notified about how to participate. Currently there is no trial date. There is no way to know how long this will take. Information will be posted on this website as it becomes available. Anyone can access the website
Getting More Information
Are more details available?
Visit the Important Documents page, where you will find the Class Certification Order, the Amended Class Definition, the Fourth Amended Complaint, DIRECTV’s Answer to Plaintiff’s Fourth Amended Complaint, and Schedule of Pretrial and Trial Dates. You may also call toll-free at 1-855-951-1511, email Class Administrator at info@DTVPrerecordClassAction.com for more information, or write to
DIRECTV Prerecord TCPA,
c/o Class Administrator,
1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210,
Philadelphia, PA 19103.
PLEASE DO NOT CONTACT THE COURT REGARDING THIS NOTICE.