By: Ellis S.B. No. 1601
(In the Senate - Filed March 14, 2003; March 20, 2003, read
first time and referred to Committee on State Affairs;
April 30, 2003, reported adversely, with favorable Committee
Substitute by the following vote: Yeas 7, Nays 0; April 30, 2003,
sent to printer.)
COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE FOR S.B. No. 1601 By: Ellis
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
relating to unclaimed funds in class actions.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
SECTION 1. Chapter 31, Civil Practice and Remedies Code, is
amended by adding Section 31.009 to read as follows:
Sec. 31.009. UNCLAIMED CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT OR JUDGMENT
FUNDS. (a) This section applies only to an action certified as a
class action under Rule 42, Texas Rules of Civil Procedure, in which
the settlement or judgment includes a monetary award, including
damages, equitable restitution, or other payment due from each
defendant to the class.
(b) Before entering an order approving settlement or
judgment, the court shall require all defendants to report to the
court by a certain date the total amount of all funds paid to the
class members. After the report is received, the court may amend
the settlement or judgment to direct each defendant to pay the sum
of any unpaid funds to the clerk of the court.
(c) The trust fund for unclaimed class action settlement or
judgment funds is created as a trust fund with the supreme court and
shall be administered by the supreme court as trustee. Interest
earned on the trust fund shall be credited to the fund.
(d) On or before the 30th day after the date funds are
received under Subsection (b), the clerk of the court shall pay the
funds to the clerk of the supreme court for deposit in the trust
fund for unclaimed class action settlement or judgment funds. The
supreme court may distribute funds in the trust fund only to
programs approved by the supreme court that provide civil legal
services to the indigent.
(e) Funds received under this section are not subject to
SECTION 2. This Act takes effect September 1, 2003, and
applies only to a suit in which an order approving settlement was
entered or judgment was entered on or after that date. A suit in
which an order approving settlement was entered or judgment was
entered before the effective date of this Act is governed by the law
applicable to the suit immediately before the effective date of
this Act, and that law is continued in effect for that purpose.
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