LOS ANGELESHerbalife Ltd. has requested another extension of deadlines in a putative class-action lawsuit as the nutrition and weight management company works to possibly finalize a settlement agreement.
Since advising a federal judge in August that Herbalife and the plaintiffs “had tentatively agreed on the principal terms of a settlement," an Oct. 17 court filing stated, “the parties have continued to work cooperatively to resolve the remaining material issues."
“The Parties, however, need a limited amount of additional time to complete the mediation and settlement process, and, if appropriate, file a joint motion for preliminary approval of a settlement," the filing added.
Court filings requested extending to Nov. 10 the deadline for Herbalife to respond to an amended lawsuit and for plaintiffs to request certification of the class. The filing also requested extending to Dec. 22 the deadline for a hearing on a motion for class certification.
The parties have spent roughly 90 hours on mediation and settlement talks over the past 10 months, the lawyers told U.S. District Judge Beverly Reid O’Connell.
Herbalife declined to comment Monday beyond the filings. Jason Hardin, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Over the summer, Herbalife stipulated to the filing of an amended complaint that added four former Herbalife distributors as plaintiffs, provided the company could move to dismiss the lawsuit or otherwise respond to it. The former distributors alleged suffering losses after joining the company.
Dana Bostick, the original plaintiff and a former Herbalife distributor, accused the company of running an unlawful pyramid scheme, an allegation state and federal authorities including the FTC are investigating.
Herbalife has repeatedly denied the pyramid scheme allegations.