A West Palm Beach litigator’s work on a class action lawsuit will benefit at least 14 legal aid programs across Florida.
Jeff Liggio of Liggio Law prevailed in a class action lawsuit against Heritage Operating L.P., now AmeriGas, over rental fees for propane tanks. His 2005 complaint resulted in a $4 million judgment for more than 65,000 Floridians doing business with the propane company.
But now thousands more are likely to benefit from money left over after compensating class members, thanks to a doctrine adopted from trust law.
Pinellas Circuit Judge Pamela Campbell, who presided over the litigation, ordered the remaining funds to be distributed among organizations that help clients struggling to cover the cost of residential utility bills. Her ruling follows the cy pres principle, which distributes trust funds “as closely as possible” to their original intended use.
About $1.65 million will go to legal aid programs across the state. Among them: about $213,400 will go to Legal Services of Greater Miami, Legal Aid of Broward County is set to receive about $141,800, and about $53,500 will go to the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County.