Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Who’s part of the Settlement?

    You may be a member of the Settlement Class if you fall within the Settlement Class definition. The “Settlement Class” is defined as:

    All individuals who, between July 17, 2015 and November 25, 2020, returned an item purchased from a Walmart store, Sam’s Club store, or online from Walmart.com or Samsclub.com for pickup or delivery within the United States, and to whom Walmart or Sam’s Club gave a refund or credit, but the amount of sales tax refunded or credited was less than the full amount of sales tax paid at the time the item was purchased.

    The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri (Judge Henry E. Autrey) has conditionally certified the Settlement Class for settlement purposes only.

    If you are not sure whether you are in the Settlement Class, or have any other questions about the settlement, you can review a copy of the Settlement Agreement here, or call 1-800-462-2905 to hear recorded answers to frequently asked questions.

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  2. What is this lawsuit about?

    The lawsuit alleges that Walmart violated the law by failing to provide a full refund in cash or store credit to some customers who were owed a full refund under Walmart’s return policy, and specifically that Walmart miscalculated and under refunded the sales taxes that those customers originally paid for the items they returned. As alleged in the lawsuit, Walmart maintains a written return policy, under which it promises its customers that they may generally return purchased items within 90 days of the purchase date and receive a full refund in cash or store credit. The lawsuit further alleges that Walmart breached the terms of its return policy and violated the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act (“MMPA”), Mo. Ann. Stat. 407.010 et seq. by failing to provide a complete refund to certain customers who made returns pursuant to the return policy–namely, that Walmart under refunded the sales taxes that some customers originally paid for items they later returned. The complaint in the lawsuit is posted here and contains all of the allegations.

    Walmart denies Plaintiff’s allegations and that it has violated the law. Neither the Court nor a jury have considered or decided the merits of the allegations in the lawsuit. The parties have negotiated and entered into the proposed Settlement to avoid the risk, uncertain outcome, expense and distraction of continued litigation.

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  3. Who represents me?

    In a class action, one or more people called “class representatives” sue on behalf of other people who have the same or similar claims. In this case, the Plaintiff, Scott Pearlstone, sued Walmart and sought to represent other consumers who could have similar claims against Walmart. The court has appointed Plaintiff for settlement purposes to be the class representative for all Settlement Class members in this case.

    The court also appointed the law firm McGuire Law, P.C. as class counsel to represent the Settlement Class members. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, you may hire one at your own expense.

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  4. What benefits can I receive from the Settlement?

    Walmart has agreed to pay a class settlement amount of $5,000,000 into a Settlement Fund. Settlement Class Members who timely filed a valid claim would be eligible to receive an equal share of the money remaining in the Settlement Fund after deductions for the costs of settlement administration, attorneys’ fees and litigation expenses, and an incentive award for the Settlement Class Representative.

    The exact amount of payments to each Settlement Class member is unknown at this time; the final amount of each payment will depend on the number of claims submitted and the amount available in the Settlement Fund after the deductions.

    If you timely submitted a valid claim form that is approved by the Settlement Administrator, your settlement payment will be paid by check mailed to you or transmitted electronically, depending on what you prefer. Claims will only be paid after the Court grants Final Approval of the Settlement and after any appeals are resolved. If there are appeals, resolving them can take time. Please be patient.

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  5. How do I make a Claim and get a Payment?

    To qualify for a payment from the Settlement, you must be a Settlement Class Member and submit a Claim Form. To submit your Claim Form, you may submit an electronic Claim Form online here, or you may download a physical copy of the Claim Form and mail it to the Settlement Administrator.

    Claim Forms must be postmarked or submitted online on or before April 1, 2021. Failure to provide complete and accurate information could result in a denial of your claim.

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  6. Do I have to pay the lawyers representing me?

    No. The Court has appointed attorneys from McGuire Law P.C. in Chicago, Illinois to serve as Settlement Class Counsel to represent you and other members of the Settlement Class. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, you may hire one at your own expense.

    To date, Settlement Class Counsel have not received any payment for their services in litigating the case on behalf of the class representatives and the Settlement Class, nor have Settlement Class Counsel been reimbursed for their costs and expenses directly relating to their representation of the Settlement Class. Prior to final approval of the Settlement, Settlement Class Counsel will ask the court for an award of attorneys’ fees and litigation expenses for investigating the facts, litigating the case, and negotiating the settlement. This award is subject to court approval and can be up to 35% of the settlement fund, or $1,750,000 plus costs and litigation expenses.

    Settlement Class Counsel’s contact information is as follows:

    Myles McGuire
    Paul T. Geske
    Brendan Duffner
    MCGUIRE LAW, P.C.
    55 West Wacker Drive, Suite 900
    Chicago, Illinois 60601
    mmcguire@mcgpc.com
    pgeske@mcgpc.com
    bduffner@mcgpc.com
    Tel: (312) 893-7002

    Class Counsel may also request that an Incentive Award of up to $10,000 be awarded to the class representative in recognition of his service to the Settlement Class. The amount of any fee or service award will be subject to approval by the court.

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  7. What am I agreeing to by remaining in the Settlement Class in this case?

    If you are a member of the Settlement Class, and if you chose to remain in the Settlement Class (i.e. you did not exclude yourself), then you would have been eligible to submit a claim to receive a payment from the $5,000,000 Settlement Fund as described above. Settlement Class Members will also be bound by the release of claims in the Settlement. This means that if the Settlement is finally approved, Settlement Class Members cannot sue, continue to sue, or be part of any lawsuit against Walmart for claims involving or relating in any way to the claims made in the lawsuit that led to the Settlement.

    The released claims include all claims that were or could have been asserted in the litigation, regardless of whether those claims are known or unknown, filed or unfiled, asserted or as yet unasserted, existing or contingent.

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  8. What if I don’t agree with the Settlement?

    If you are a member of the Settlement Class, and have not excluded yourself from the Settlement, you may object to the Settlement or any part of the Settlement if you think there are legal reasons why the court should reject it. If you object, the court will consider your views. To object, you must file your objection with the Court and serve a copy of the letter to the Settlement Administrator and the lawyers for both the Settlement Class and Walmart. Your objection must clearly state the following information:

    1. The case name and case number of this Litigation (Pearlstone v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Case No. 4:17-cv-02856-HEA [E.D. Mo.]);
    2. Your full name, current address, email address, and phone number;
    3. The reasons why you object to the Settlement along with any supporting materials;
    4. Information about all other objections you or your lawyer(s) have made in other class action cases in state or federal courts, including the name of the case, case number, the court in which the objection was filed, and the outcome of the objection; and
    5. Your signature.

    Your objection must be postmarked no later than April 1, 2021. Objections must be mailed to:

    Settlement Administrator Plaintiff’s Counsel Walmart’s Counsel
    Walmart Sales Tax Refund Settlement Administrator
    PO Box 2995
    Portland, OR 97208-2995
    Paul Geske
    MCGUIRE LAW, P.C.
    55 W. Wacker Drive, 9th FL
    Chicago, IL 60601
    Naomi G. Beer
    GREENBERG TRAURIG, LLP
    1144 15th Street, Suite 3300
    Denver, Colorado 80202
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  9. Can I exclude myself from the Settlement Class?

    If you do not want a payment and do not want to be legally bound by the terms of the Settlement, you must exclude yourself from the Settlement. If you do so, you will not be eligible to receive any payments as a result of this Settlement. However, you will keep the right to sue or continue to sue Walmart on your own and at your own expense if you wish to pursue any of the claims being released as part of this settlement.

    To exclude yourself from the Settlement Class, you must submit a timely and valid “Opt-Out Request” to the Settlement Administrator in writing. To be valid, the request must include:

    1. The case name and case number of this Litigation (Pearlstone v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Case No. 4:17-cv-02856-HEA [E.D. Mo.]);
    2. Your full name, current address, email address, and phone number;
    3. A statement that you wish to exclude yourself from the Settlement Class; and
    4. Your signature.

    To be considered timely, you must submit your fully completed Opt-Out Request to the following address postmarked no later than April 1, 2021.

    Walmart Sales Tax Refund Settlement Administrator
    PO Box 2995
    Portland, OR 97208-2995

    REQUESTS FOR EXCLUSION FROM THE CLASS THAT ARE NOT POSTMARKED ON OR BEFORE APRIL 1, 2021, WILL NOT BE HONORED.

    You cannot exclude yourself from the Settlement Class by telephone, email, or on this website. You cannot exclude yourself by mailing a request to any other location or after the deadline above. Your request for exclusion must be signed by you.

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  10. What is the difference between objecting and asking to be excluded?

    Objecting is telling the Court the legal reasons why you do not like something about the Settlement. You can object to the settlement only if you are a Settlement Class Member and you do not exclude yourself.

    Excluding yourself is telling the court that you do not want to be part of the settlement. If you exclude yourself, you cannot object to the settlement because it no longer affects you.

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  11. What if I do nothing at all?

    If you are a Settlement Class Member and choose to do nothing, you will remain a member of the Settlement Class and release your claims against Walmart. However, you will not be eligible to receive an individual payment. You must submit a claim to receive a payment from this settlement.

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  12. What will be decided at the final approval hearing?

    The Final Approval Hearing was held Thursday, April 22, 2021.

    At the final approval hearing, the court considered whether the settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate. The court also considered the request by Settlement Class Counsel for attorneys’ fees and expenses and for the Settlement Class Representative’s incentive award. The settlement was approved.

    Final Approval was granted on May 24, 2021.

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  13. Where can I get more information?

    For more information, you can visit the Important Documents page, review a copy of the Settlement Agreement here, or call 1-800-462-2905 to hear recorded answers to frequently asked questions. You may also contact Class Counsel (see FAQ 6).

    PLEASE DO NOT CALL OR WRITE THE COURT, THE COURT CLERK’S OFFICE, WALMART, OR WALMART’S COUNSEL. THEY WILL NOT BE ABLE TO ASSIST YOU.

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