FAQs

  1. Am I a part of the class action settlement?

 

You are a part of the class action settlement if you paid the 1.5% uniform service charge on accommodations, prepared food and beverage, and admissions to amusements, and a 2.5% uniform service charge on rental cars, on purchases within the corporate limits of any Horry County municipality between January 1, 2017, and August 19, 2019, or will pay the fee on such purchases in the future.  The municipalities are the Town of Atlantic Beach, the Town of Aynor, the City of Conway, the City of Loris, the City of Myrtle Beach, the City of North Myrtle Beach, and the Town of Surfside Beach.  There were no businesses imposing the fee within the Town of Briarcliffe Acres.

 

  1. How do I obtain a complete copy of the Class Action Settlement Agreement?

 

You can download it here.

 

  1. How do I obtain a complete copy of the court-approved comprehensive notice of the settlement?

 

You can download it here.

 

  1. What benefits will I receive from the settlement?

 

You will receive two benefits.  First, you can obtain reimbursement for the documented payment of the Hospitality Fee in the municipalities between January 1, 2017, and August 10, 2019.  Second, all future fee collections within the municipalities will be returned to those municipalities for use on tourism-related projects defined in Section 6-1-530 and 6-1-730 of the South Carolina Code.

 

  1. Can I opt-out of the class action settlement?

 

You can opt-out of the settlement for purposes of obtaining reimbursement for the fee paid within the period described above.  If you do so, you will not be able to submit a Claim Form for reimbursement but may be able to bring your own independent claim for reimbursement against Horry County, subject to any filing and submission requirements as may apply under its ordinances and any applicable time limitations on such claims.  You cannot opt-out of the portion of the settlement which allows Horry County to resume imposing the fee within the municipalities based upon their consent and then return those fee collections to the municipalities.

 

If you would like to opt-out of a claim for reimbursement, you must complete and submit the Opt-Out Form found here.  The form must be post-marked by April 15, 2021.  You must mail the Opt-Out Form via First Cass U.S. Mail to the following addresses:

 

Original

Hospitality Fee Settlement Administrator

P.O. Box 2468

Myrtle Beach, SC 29578

 

Copy

John M.S. Hoefer, Esq.

Willoughby & Hoefer, PA

P.O. Box 8416

Columbia, SC 29202

Copy

Gene M. Connell, Jr., Esq.

Kelaher, Connell & Connor, PC P.O. Drawer 14547

Surfside Beach, SC 29587

  1. Can I object to the settlement?

 

Yes.  If you wish to object to the settlement agreement, you must complete and file the Objection Form found here.  Please note the Objection Form must be received by the Horry County Clerk of Court by April 15, 2021.  To file your Objection Form, you must mail it via First Cass U.S. Mail to the following addresses:

 

Original

Renee Elvis

Horry County Clerk of Court  P.O. Box 677

Conway, SC 29526

Copy

John M.S. Hoefer, Esq.

Willoughby & Hoefer, PA

P.O. Box 8416

Columbia, SC 29202

Copy

Gene M. Connell, Jr., Esq.

Kelaher, Connell & Connor, PC P.O. Drawer 14547

Surfside Beach, SC 29587

 

You must also attend the Final Fairness Hearing scheduled for April 16, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. if you would like your objection to be heard.  You may be deemed to have waived your objection if you do not appear at the Final Fairness Hearing.  Instructions for attending the hearing can be found here.  You do not need to hire an attorney to object and appear at the hearing.

 

  1. How do I submit a claim for reimbursement?

 

Complete and submit the Claim Form found here.  Your Claim Form must be postmarked by May 15, 2021.  Be sure to attach sufficient documentary proof that you paid the fee between January 1, 2017, and August 10, 2019, within one of the municipalities.  You cannot seek reimbursement of fees paid in the unincorporated area of Horry County (i.e., areas within Horry County but not within the corporate limits of any of the municipalities).  You must mail the Claim Form and your supporting documentation via First Cass U.S. Mail to the following address:

 

Hospitality Fee Settlement Administrator

P.O. Box 2468

Myrtle Beach, SC 29578

 

You will not receive reimbursement unless you submit a Claim Form and sufficient supporting documentation.

 

  1. When will I receive my reimbursement?

 

The Settlement Administrator will review and decide all claims by June 15, 2021.  If the Settlement Administrator determines that you are entitled to reimbursement, and an order approving the settlement issued by the Court has become final and unappealable, a check will be sent via First Class U.S. Mail to the name and address provided on your Claim Form by that date.  In the event that the Court order is not final by that date, a check will be sent promptly after the date upon which it is final.

  1. What happens if I disagree with the Settlement Administrator’s determination of my claim?

 

You can submit the Dispute Form found here to the Settlement Administrator.  The Dispute Form must be postmarked within thirty (30) days of the Settlement Administrator’s determination of your claim.  You must mail the Dispute Form via First Cass U.S. Mail to the following address:

 

Hospitality Fee Settlement Administrator

P.O. Box 2468

Myrtle Beach, SC 29578

 

  1. What happens if I disagree with the resolution of my dispute with the Settlement Administrator?

 

You may appeal the dispute to a court-appointed Special Master using the Appeal Form found here.  Please note that you can only appeal to the Special Master after you have submitted a Dispute Form to the Settlement Administrator and received the Settlement Administrator’s resolution of your dispute.  The Appeal Form must be postmarked within thirty (30) days of the Settlement Administrator’s decision on your dispute.  You must mail the Appeal Form via First Cass U.S. Mail to the following address:

 

Karl A. Folkens, Esq.

Folkens Law Firm, P.A.

601 W. Evans Street

Florence, SC 29501

 

The Special Master will rule on all appeals by September 15, 2021.

 

  1. Can I or the Settlement Administrator appeal the Special Master’s determination of my appeal?

 

No.  The Special Master’s ruling is final and binding on all parties.

 

  1. How do I change the address I provided the Settlement Administrator?

 

Please send your name, telephone number, and your new address to the following address:

Hospitality Fee Settlement Administrator

P.O. Box 2468

Myrtle Beach, SC 29578

 

  1. Who are counsel for the Class?

 

The Court has appointed John M. S. Hoefer, Chad N. Johnston, and R. Walker Humphrey, II of the law firm Willoughby & Hoefer, P.A. as class counsel.

 

  1. How do I get more information?

 

You may call toll-fee 1-877-483-7754 to obtain more information.  You may also write to the following address:

 

Hospitality Fee Settlement Administrator

P.O. Box 2468

Myrtle Beach, SC 29578

 

Please including your name and phone number or return address on all correspondence.