U.S. Tobacco reaches settlement over reserve funds
U.S. Tobacco Cooperative, Inc. (“U.S. Tobacco”), formerly known as Flue-Cured Tobacco Cooperative Stabilization Corporation, has reached a $24 million settlement to resolve claims made by current and former U.S. Tobacco members over reserve funds. Tobacco growers across North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Florida, Georgia, and Alabama who were or are members of U.S. Tobacco, as well as their heirs or representatives, are eligible for a payment from the settlement, according to a release from attorneys involved in the case.
The settlement stems from a lawsuit that claims U.S. Tobacco accumulated funds over the years through members who may now claim portions of those funds, and no longer served its purpose once the Tobacco Price Support Program ended.
Although U.S. Tobacco denies these claims and that it is required to distribute any money, it has agreed to do so in the settlement.
Individuals or businesses may be included if they are or were a shareholder or member of U.S. Tobacco from June 1, 1946, through the date the settlement goes into effect, or an heir or legal representative. An heir in this case is a person who received (or inherited) a share of a former shareholder’s stake or member’s membership in U.S. Tobacco. A legal representative is a person who legally acts for or on behalf of the shareholder or member.
Eligible individuals or businesses can now submit a claim form online or by mail by May 26, 2018 to get a payment. The payment amount will be based on the total pounds of flue-cured tobacco that they marketed and sold and/or the total number of crop years they marketed and sold flue-cured tobacco, relative to all members who submit a claim. Claim forms are available at the website, www.FlueCuredTobaccoSettlement.com, or by calling 1-866-458-3207.
For more information visit www.FlueCuredTobaccoSettlement.com or call: 1-866-458-3207.