Yes. Unless you affirmatively exclude yourself from the settlement, you will agree to the “Release by Participating Class Members,” as described in Paragraph 29 of the Settlement Agreement. (The settlement agreement is available on the settlement website at www.AhoJHSettlement.com.) The release covers a period from November 6, 2013, to October 9, 2020. That means that you cannot sue, continue to sue, or be part of any other lawsuit against either Defendant or other Released Parties about the legal issues in this case. It also means that the Court’s orders will apply to you and legally bind you. Here is the full text of the Release from the settlement agreement:
As of the Defendants’ full funding of the Total Settlement Amount, and except as to the rights and obligations created by this Agreement, all Participating Class Members (including Plaintiffs themselves), hereby release, dismiss and forever discharge Defendants Jackson Hewitt Inc., Tax Services of America, Inc., as well as Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. (the ultimate parent), and their past or present owners, parent entities, subsidiaries, and each and all of their respective officers, directors, shareholders, partner, managers and employees (collectively “Released Parties”) from all claims, causes of action, demands, rights and liabilities of every nature and description that are asserted in, arise from, or relate to the factual allegations and/or legal assertions made in the Class Action, individually or on a class-wide basis, during the Class Period. For the avoidance of doubt, the Parties agree that this release does not cover Jackson Hewitt franchisees. This release extends to all claims for unpaid wages, premiums, restitution, and civil and statutory penalties under the California Labor Code, Wage Orders, applicable regulations, and/or provisions of state law governing wages and hours of work that were brought or that could have been brought in the Class Action based on the facts and allegations asserted in the First Amended Complaint filed in the Class Action, including claims for unpaid overtime wages, double time wages, meal period violations, rest break violations, failure to reimburse for business expenses (including cell phone reimbursement), untimely payment of wages, wage statement violations, and unfair business practices pursuant to Business and Professions Code Section 17200 et seq. (“Released Claims”). As a result of this release, Participating Class Members will not be aggrieved employees for purposes of PAGA for the Released Claims during the Class Period.