Payments

302. I received a Notice of Monetary Award Claim Determination or Notice of Derivative Claimant Award Determination. Do I need to do anything else to receive payment of the award?


Yes. To receive your payment, you (or, if you are represented, your lawyer) must submit completed, signed versions of these forms to the Claims Administrator:

1. Payment Election Form.

If a lawyer represents you in this Settlement Program, he or she must choose how to receive the funds on your behalf. Click here for the Payment Election Form that your lawyer can use to select payment by wire or check.

If you are not represented by a lawyer and you are a Portal user, you can log into your Portal account and fill out the Payment Election Form to select your payment method. If you are not represented by a lawyer and you do not have a Portal account, you can contact the Claims Administrator to request a copy of the Payment Election Form or download a copy here.

2. Form W-9 – Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification.

If a lawyer represents you in this Settlement Program, he or she must submit a “Form W-9 – Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification.” This form is published by the IRS and is used for legal entities receiving payment to provide their Taxpayer Identification Numbers and certify that they are accurate.

If you are not represented by a lawyer, you do not need to provide a Form W-9.

3. SWS-5 – Sworn Statement: Status of Assignment of Claim.

Under the Court’s Explanation and Order dated December 8, 2017, the Claims Administrator is required to ask all eligible Settlement Class Members whether they have assigned or attempted to assign their Monetary Award or Derivative Claimant Award claim. To receive payment, eligible Class Members must complete, sign and submit a Sworn Statement regarding the Status of Assignment of Monetary Claim – click here to download this form. At the Court’s instruction, this Sworn Statement must be completed and signed by Class Members, not their lawyers, even if the Settlement Class Member is represented.

If a lawyer represents you in this Settlement Program, complete this Sworn Statement and give it to your lawyer to submit to the Claims Administrator.

If you are not represented by a lawyer, complete this Sworn Statement and submit it directly to the Claims Administrator following the instructions on the form.

If you answer Yes on this Sworn Statement to indicate that you have assigned or attempted to assign Settlement benefits from your monetary claim to a third party, you or your lawyer must submit all documents related to that attempted assignment. Additional forms may also be required.


303. When will I receive payment for my Monetary Award or Derivative Claimant Award?


After you receive notice that you are eligible for an Award, the whole payment process could be complete in as little as two weeks, but it will most likely take longer than that. There are several things that can affect when you get paid, including these:

(1) Whether you, Co-Lead Class Counsel, or the NFL Parties appeals;

(2) Whether your claim is placed into audit;

(3) Whether a Bankruptcy Court must approve your payment;

(4) If you will receive payment as a Representative Claimant or Derivative Claimant Representative, whether you still need to be approved to act on the Settlement Class Member’s behalf;

(5) When your claim is placed on a Claims Administrator Funding Request (the Claims Administrator submits Funding Requests to Co-Lead Class Counsel and the NFL Parties by the 10th day of each month);

Reminder: If your claim becomes eligible for payment (there are no appeals, no audits and no Bankruptcy issues) after the 10th of a month, you will not be placed on a Claims Administrator Funding Request until the next month.

(6) Whether the Special Masters approve the Claims Administrator’s Disbursement Report and authorize payment to move forward (after the Special Masters approve a Disbursement Report, the Claims Administrator sends it to the bank); and

(7) Whether you entered into an agreement that assigned or attempted to assign any portion of your Monetary Award.

Reminder: Section 30.1 of the Settlement Agreement and the Court's Explanation and Order entered on December 8, 2017, prohibit Settlement Class Members from assigning any portion of their Monetary Awards. Click here for an FAQ about this. Click here for the Rules Governing Assignment of Claims, which cover how the Claims Administrator and Special Masters evaluate whether a transaction is prohibited as an assignment and how such prohibited assignments affect payment.

In most cases, your claim will be paid within 15 to 60 days of being placed on the Funding Request.

Reminder: The Payment Process Timeline on the Reference Guides page of the Settlement Website provides more information about this (click here to view it).


304. Who will issue the payment to me?


The Court appointed Citibank as the Trustee for this Settlement Program. If you are eligible for a payment, Citibank will send the funds to you (or, if you are represented, to your lawyer).

Reminder: You can find more information about the Settlement Trust in Section 23.5 of the Settlement Agreement, which is available on the Settlement Website (click here to read it).


305. How will the funds be issued by Citibank?


It depends on how you (or, if you are represented, your lawyer) ask to be paid. There are two options:

(1) Wire transfer: the funds are electronically sent to the designated bank account; or

(2) Check: a check is mailed to the designated address.

You (or, if you are represented, your lawyer) can use the Payment Election Form to tell the Claims Administrator how and where funds should be issued by Citibank. If you are represented by a lawyer, your lawyer will complete the Payment Election Form. If you do not have a lawyer, you must complete the Payment Election Form. Portal users can fill out the Payment Election Form online in their Portals. If you do not use a Portal, contact the Claims Administrator to request a blank Payment Election Form or download it from the Forms page of the Settlement Website.


306. If I want to appeal only part of my Monetary Award amount, can I get paid for the rest before my appeal is final?


No. The Claims Administrator cannot pay you for some of your Monetary Award while the rest is subject to an appeal. You will receive payment for your Monetary Award only after the appeal process is finished.


307. Will my Monetary Award or Derivative Claimant Award be issued to my lawyer or directly to me?


If you are represented by a lawyer and entitled to a Monetary Award or Derivative Claimant Award, the Settlement Program will issue the full payment to your lawyer, subject to applicable reductions (for example, unresolved Medical Liens, offsets for Eligible Seasons, Derivative Claimant holdbacks, common benefit holdbacks, etc.). The payment will be made to your lawyer, who then will pay funds to you according to whatever representation agreement you have with your lawyer. In certain limited instances, the Settlement Program will make the payment in your name rather than your lawyer’s (click here for an FAQ describing such circumstances).

If you are not represented by a lawyer, the Settlement Program will issue the full payment directly to you, subject to applicable reductions.


308. Can a Settlement Class Member assign rights to receive his or her Monetary Award or Derivative Claimant Award, or a portion of the Award, to a third party?


No. Section 30.1 of the Amended Settlement Agreement prohibits Settlement Class Members from assigning any rights or claims relating to the subject matter of the Class Action Complaint to any person or entity other than the NFL Parties. The Claims Administrator will not recognize such assignments or attempts to assign. This includes the assignment of any rights to receive a Monetary Award or a Derivative Claimant Award, or any portion of an Award, in exchange for a cash advance. The Claims Administrator does not provide cash advances nor is it affiliated with any groups offering cash advances.

In a December 8, 2017 Order, the Court held that the Claims Administrator must ask each Settlement Class Member who is eligible for an Award whether he or she made an assignment or has attempted to assign. The Settlement Class Member must provide a verified response and, if an assignment has been made or attempted, give the Claims Administrator any documents related to the transaction (including any documents signed by his or her attorney).

If a Settlement Class Member entered into an agreement that assigned or attempted to assign any monetary claims:

(1) That agreement is void, invalid and of no force and effect.

(2) The Settlement Class Member should return to the Third-Party Funder the amount already paid to him or her.

(3) The Claims Administrator is authorized to withhold from an Award the amount a Third-Party Funder already paid to the Settlement Class Member only if that Third-Party Funder signs a valid waiver relinquishing any claims or rights under the entire agreement creating the assignment or attempted assignment. If the Third-Party Funder does not sign the waiver relinquishing any claims or rights, the Claims Administrator will not withhold any funds for the Third-Party Funder and the Claims Administrator will pay the applicable Award amount to the Settlement Class Member.

To read more about assignments of Settlement benefits, click here to read the Court's December 8, 2017 Explanation and Order Regarding Assignment of Monetary Claims to Third Parties.


309. What is the fee cap?


On April 5, 2018, the Court ordered that if a lawyer represents a Settlement Class Member, the lawyer’s fees cannot be more than 22% of that Settlement Class Member’s Award. (Click here to read the Order.) The Order specifies that the cap on lawyers’ fees is 22% “plus reasonable costs.” This 22% fee cap includes a 5% withholding for the Common Benefit Fund, which means the fee cap is effectively 17%.



310. What happens to those lawyers’ fees and expenses that the Claims Administrator has withheld from Award payments?


Under the Court’s Order Regarding Payment of Attorneys’ Fees and Expenses dated June 27, 2018, if the Claims Administrator has withheld fees and expenses from a lawyer who represents a Settlement Class Member, the Claims Administrator will release those funds to the lawyer, plus any investment earnings that accrued while the funds were held in the Monetary Award Fund, as calculated by the Trustee under the Settlement Trust Agreement. If the released amount is more than what the lawyer is allowed to take under the fee cap, the lawyer must promptly pay the balance to the Settlement Class Member(s).

311. What are claims service providers and are they covered by the fee cap?


Claims service providers are those companies that, on a contingency fee basis, agree to perform services on behalf of Settlement Class Members relating to Registration, medical testing, Claim Package preparation, lawyer referrals, and/or other actions concerning the Settlement. The fee cap applies to and includes: (1) claims service provider fees plus reasonable costs, (2) lawyers’ fees and (3) a 5% withholding for the Common Benefit Fund. This means that a Settlement Class Member’s Award is subject to only one fee cap, and the 22% fee amount must cover claims service providers’ fees and costs, lawyers’ fees and a 5% withholding for the Common Benefit Fund. To be clear, the claims service providers’ fees and costs are not to be classified as attorneys’ expenses or costs.

312. Do lawyers have to send a statement of contingency fees and expenses to the Claims Administrator?


Usually no, but there are some exceptions. Under the Court’s Order Regarding Payment of Attorneys’ Fees and Expenses dated June 27, 2018, lawyers who represent Settlement Class Members do not have to provide the Claims Administrator with a statement of their contingency fees and expenses. The Claims Administrator will not withhold a lawyer’s fees and expenses unless required under the Rules Governing Attorneys’ Liens or the Rules Governing Petitions for Deviation from the Fee Cap. Additionally, if the Settlement Class Member has entered into a Prohibited Assignment with a Third-Party Funder, the Court’s Order dated February 20, 2018, requires the Claims Administrator to pay Awards directly to Settlement Class Members. (Click here for more information on Third-Party Funders and Prohibited Assignments.) When this happens, if a Settlement Class Member is represented by a lawyer, the Claims Administrator will require that the lawyer provide a Statement of Attorney Fees and Expenses to determine how much of the Award should be set aside for the lawyer.



313. What does the Claims Administrator do with the 5% Common Benefit Fund Holdback?


The Court’s Order Regarding Withholdings for Common Benefit Fund dated June 27, 2018, directed the Claims Administrator to release to the Attorneys’ Fees Qualified Settlement Fund the 5% of Awards withheld for the Common Benefit Fund. Any 5% Common Benefit Fund Holdback amount that the Claims Administrator had withheld in the Monetary Award Fund, plus any investment earnings that accrued on that amount, has been disbursed to the Attorneys’ Fees Qualified Settlement Fund. See Section 23.7 of the Settlement Agreement, available here, for more information about this Fund.