Golf Club Faces Class Action Lawsuit
A subsidiary of Concert Golf Partners that controls the Plantation Golf and Country Club (PGCC) in Venice, FL faces a class-action lawsuit brought by former members who say they were denied millions of dollars in refunds. In a November 1, 2021 ruling, Judge Andrea McHugh, a Florida circuit court judge, granted class-action status to the suit by former members against the club and Concert Plantation, LLC. Between 500 and 700 resigned members may be part of this class action. Those eligible for the class action lawsuit include all individuals (or their guardians or estate representatives) who resigned their equity memberships before January 1, 2016, and have not received their full refund amount.
Refund Checks Fraction of Original Amounts Due
Plantation Golf and Country Club is governed through bylaws established when the club first opened. When resigning from a PGCC equity membership, members go on a waiting list to get refunds. However, it may take years before a resigned member actually gets their check. Refund amounts are based on the current Bylaws when the member’s resignation occurs. For many members, the refund amount was 80% of the equity membership fee in effect on the effective date of resignation. Recently paid refunds are NOWHERE NEAR the originally promised 80%. The change of bylaws without consent from resigned members is a self-serving business practice by PGCC.
PGCC Class Action Litigation Updates
|11/01/2021||Ruling granting class certification. The Class is defined as: “All individuals (or their guardians or representatives) who had an effective resigned equity membership before April 1, 2016, and who have not received their full refund amount.”|
|12/06/2021||Written Order granting Class Certification issued|
|12/07/2021||Order approving forms for Class Action|
|12/07/2021||The Class files their Motion for Partial Summary Judgment to have the Court decide their claim for breach of contract and other issues. Read the redacted motion here.|
|12/16/2021||Notice of Appeal as to Class Certification filed by Concert|
|12/17/2021||Notice of Appeal as to Class Certification filed by PGCC|
|12/20/2021||Concert Plantation and PGCC file a Motion to freeze the lawsuit until the Appeals Court rules on Class Action Certification.|
|12/31/2021||Mail Class Action Notices mailed to class members/former PGCC equity members|
|01/12/2022||The Motion by Concert Plantation and PGCC is DENIED. Circuit Court Judge McHugh rules that the lawsuit can go forward while the appeal of the Class Action certification is pending. Read the Judge's Order Here.|
|01/20/2022||Concert Plantation & PGCC file a Motion to Continue/Delay the hearing on the Motion for Partial Summary Judgment as well as the Trial.|
|01/24/2022||The Class files its response opposing any continuation or delay|
|02/01/2022||Hearing before Magistrate Bailey regarding numerous requests for documents|
|02/04/2022||Deposition of Class Representative – A. Anderson|
|02/08/2022||Hearing before Judge McHugh on motions to continue/delay hearing and trial.|
|02/08/2022||The Class asks the court to help simplify discovery|
|02/09/2022||Deposition of Class Representative – C. Holloway|
|02/09/2022||Court issues Order setting expert report deadlines|
|02/10/2022||Concert Plantation & PGCC file their Motion for Summary Judgment to have the Court decide the breach of contract issue as well as decide whether the Receipt & Release forms signed by certain class members is valid.|
|02/11/2022||Agreed Order is entered by the Court to simplify the discovery process.|
|02/14/2022||The Motion by Concert Plantation and PGCC to continue/delay the trial is DENIED. The hearing and the trial will move ahead as scheduled.|
|02/16/2022||Deposition of Class Representative – P. McGowan|
|02/23/2022||Deposition of former PGCC Club Manager J. Leinaweaver|
|03/02/2022||Defendants file their response to The Class’ motion for a decision on its claims for breach of contract and other issues.|
|03/02/2022||The Class files additional arguments explaining why the Receipt and Releases were never valid.|
|03/15/2022||Defendants’ file a Motion for Summary Judgment requesting that the Court decide the entire case based on the evidence without the need for trial.|
|03/22/22||Two days of hearings on the Motions for Partial Summary Judgment filed by both The Class and by PGCC and Concert Plantation, asking the Court to decide certain claims and defenses without the need for trial|
|03/30/2022||Deposition of Peter Nanula|
|03/31/2022||The Class serves the report of its expert Chris Foux regarding how much The Class is owed.|
|04/13/2022||Deposition of Chris Foux.|
|04/14/2022||Court issues its ruling saying that The Class did not present enough evidence to prove that PGCC breached its contract with the members of The Class.|
|04/28/2022||Deposition of Corporate Representative for Concert Golf Partners, LLC|
|04/28/2022||Deposition of Corporate Representative for Concert Plantation, LLC|
|04/28/2022||Deposition of Corporate Representative for Concert Golf Partners Holdco, LLC|
|04/28/2022||Deposition of Corporate Representative for Golf GP II, LLC|
|04/28/2022||Deposition of Corporate Representative for PGCC|
|04/28/2022||The Class files its Answer Brief to the brief filed by PGCC and Concert Plantation appealing Class Certification. Read the Answer Brief here.|
|05/05/2022||The Class provides the Court with its arguments explaining that there are fact issues that need to go to a jury to decide. Read the redacted Motion here.|
|05/13/2022||Hearing on PGCC’s motion that the Court decide the entire case (all claims by the The Class) without a trial.|
|05/13/2022||The Judge immediately ruled in favor of PGCC and Concert on all counts and determined that The Class has no claims to present to a jury.|
|05/13/2022||Judge removes the case from the June 2022 trial docket.|
|05/20/2022||Class Update. Read the latest update here.|
|09/13/2022||Oral Arguments before the 2nd District Court of Appeals regarding the appeal by PGCC and Concert Plantation on Class Certification. Watch the video of the proceedings here.|
|12/5/2022||Decision by the 2nd District Court of Appeals regarding the appeal by PGCC and Concert Plantation on Class Certification|
|01/03/2023||Final Judgment entered in favor of PGCC and Concert Plantation|
|01/18/2023||The Class files its Motion for Rehearing of Summary Judgment filed. Read it here|
|02/20/2023||PGCC and Concert file their reply objecting to the request for rehearing by The Class. Read it here|
|02/23/2023||Judge issues Order denying the rehearing requested by The Class|
|03/23/2023||The Class files its Notice of Appeal to the 2nd District Court of Appeals. Read it here|
|04/11/2023||Update letters sent to The Class Representatives|
|04/07/2023||Defendants file a Notice of Cross-Appeal|
Concert Golf Partners Buys Plantation Golf and Country Club
The Country Club sold to Concert Golf Partners, a company that “owns and operates 19 upscale private clubs.” Along with the sale came a plan to recapitalize. Tom Kubik, the president of Plantation Golf and Country Club, told the Venice Gondolier Sun that “in addition to the reinvestment program, CGP will immediately redeem all resigned member equity, exchanging current member equity redemption rights for those improvements.” The full article about the sale of PGCC is available here.
In other words, refund plans for resigned members are moving forward even with the sale of the country club. However, the amounts of the refunds are not discussed in the article.
Class Action Lawsuit: Are You on the PGCC Equity Membership Refund Waiting List? Did You Get the Wrong Refund Amount?
mctlaw Fights to Help You Receive the Amount You Deserve. Call Us Now or Fill Out a Form Below.
Self-Serving Business Practices and Harm to Resigned Members
According to the June 4th, 2013 PGCC legal committee meeting minutes, board and staff members question attorneys about the equity membership refunds. A copy of the meeting notes is available by clicking on the document to the right.
At the time of the meeting, the country club listed over 500 pending resigned members awaiting redemptions. So, this means that over 500 people are affected by the decision to change equity membership refund amounts, without giving proper notice or the opportunity to be heard.
To change redemption bylaws, 100% of the resigned members waiting for refunds must agree to any changes. However, board members changed the redemption ‘formula’ in the bylaws against attorney advice. The new amount is a fraction of the refund resigned members are entitled to at the time of resignation. Even more, this change came with no consent from resigned members waiting for their redemption.
Board members and staff made the decision to change the bylaws, knowing it would harm the resigned members. However, the amount of money the club saves from lowering refund amounts greatly outweighs the amount they have to pay in a few lawsuits over the refunds. So, the country club chose profit over people. These are self-serving business practices in action at the expense of resigned members.
Consequently, the minutes of this meeting proves the board members and legal committee were aware of the Self Serving Business Practices in use when changing redemption bylaws without consent.
Mctlaw is Actively Litigating Resigned Equity Membership Cases on Behalf of Our Clients
Mctlaw fights for you to get the correct refund amount from Plantation Golf and Country Club. Talk to our attorneys about your refund even if you already received a redemption check for an incorrect amount, or you’re awaiting a redemption check,
Attorneys at mctlaw believe you deserve the amount originally and contractually promised when you purchased an equity membership. We have an experienced commercial litigation team ready to help you. To get in contact, fill out the form below, or call 888.952.5242.
Content Reviewed by Benjamin Christian – Appellate Law
Benjamin Christian practices in the Firm’s appellate law group. He served 4 years of active duty service in the Army as a Judge Advocate with the rank of Captain. Mr. Christian was a legal advisor for the Special Operations Aviation Command and served as a legal assistance attorney for the XVIII Airborne Corps in Fort Bragg, NC, where he also served as the Chief of the Federal Litigation Division.
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