Disposition of McDonald's Case Delayed Until End of March

Judge Richard Siebel was to have ruled on the division of a $10 million settlement between McDonald’s and vegetarian groups on February 25. Instead, Siebel decided to delay his ruling until March 25 after questions were raised about some of the groups seeking funds.

The funds can only go to tax-exempt groups, but the tax status of two of the groups — the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America and the Hindu Student Council — were still in limbo. Siebel delayed his decision to allow time for plaintiffs attorneys to determine the tax status of those two groups.

Some vegetarian groups have objected to the proposed division of the settlement and have hired Chicago attorney Michael Hyman to represent them. At the February 25 hearing Judge Siebel apparently ignored the concerns of those objecting to the proposed division.

The Associated Press quoted Hyman as saying that Siebel did not ask any questions regarding the objectors concerns. “He’s made up his mind, it sounds like,” Hyman said.

Hyman said that his clients would likely appeal the division of the settlement if there are no changes, and a story posted at VegSource.Com said that, “A consortium of a wide number of celebrated vegetarian individuals is forming which will likely appeal any decisions which are counter to the interests of the vegetarian class.”

Sources:

Judge Delays Dispersal in McDonald’s Case. Associated Press, February 25, 2003.

Judge delays ruling another month. VegSource.Com, February 25, 2003.

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