Refunds to commence January 2014; refund request extension

The deadline to request a refund has been extended to June 1st, 2014.

Those who have already requested a refund will be contacted beginning in January 2014, and refunds will be commencing shortly after.

If you have any additional questions, please email kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com. 

- Aaron Brown

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Cookson issues statement on Kimmage Action

It was reported yesterday Brian Cookson reached out to Paul Kimmage to inform Kimmage the action against him will be dismissed.

This clears the way for the refund process to commence upon notification phase completion on December 31st, 2013. If you have any questions, please contact kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com.

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Questions on why the information on the submittal form is necessary

There have been several emails asking why donors need to provide the information required to receive a refund. In particular the emails have questioned the requirement of the PayPal transaction number.

Like many businesses in today’s climate, clients need to provide a receipt which proves a purchase in order to receive a refund. Having the ability to cross-reference your name, donation amount, and the transaction number gives the legal basis to prove you are the one making the request. It also eliminates any potential of disputes arising after the refund process is complete.

The FAQ section has been updated to provide further clarification on this point, in #9.

If you have any questions, contact kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com

 

- Aaron Brown

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Concerns over “Terms and Conditions”

There have been a few emails concerned about the phrase on the refund request submittal page which states, “I agree to abide by terms and conditions to be set in order to receive the refund.”

The phrase has been adjusted.

This is to notify you that there will be terms and conditions requiring your approval in order to receive the refund. You will be receiving those terms and conditions once the refund request window is close to closing, and your refund request has been validated against donation records.

Those terms and conditions will revolve around privacy protection issues and an acknowledgement that receipt of the refund closes any potential additional claims.

You will have an opportunity to review the terms and conditions prior to the completion of the refund process.

Thank you for your concerns. If you have any additional questions in relation to this or any other issue, send an email to kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com

- Aaron Brown

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Receive Your Refund

Please fill out the contact form to indicate your desire to receive a refund for your donation. You will be returned 70% of the donation you gave in 2012. Donors will have until December 31st, 2013 to request a refund. Refunds will commence once all the information is reviewed, audited, and verified against the original donation submitted.

Any refund requests submitted by any other means will not be recognised or acknowledged.

Donors will receive an email confirming their submittal. After December 31st, 2013, donors will receive a second email with their refund options. This will be followed by a third email indicating the refund has been executed.

All information obtained will only be used to provide a refund to the donors. All information obtained will remain in confidence, and will not be provided to any third parties for any reason. All information submitted by individuals on this form will not be revealed in any public forum for any purpose.

If you have any questions, send an email to kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com

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Frequently Asked Questions

How does this all work? This section should hopefully answer all your questions on how the refund will be executed. If your question isn’t answered, you’re welcome to send an email to kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com.

1. Why are you responsible for dispersing the funds?

My former business partner and I took on the responsibility of collecting the defence funds. As Paul Kimmage stated in September he did not want to have control of the funds, and maintain an arm’s length association with the funds, it was our responsibility.

Due to American IRS laws, my former associate did not wish to have any legal or tax liability. I agreed to assume those liabilities. My assumption of liability was agreed to in writing, and is on record with both legal teams involved with the business dissolution.

2.How much did Kimmage receive?

Kimmage received 21,000.00 CHF in December to pay his outstanding bill to his Swiss lawyer. The bill from the lawyer was 20,000.00 CHF, and 1,000 CHF was also transferred to Kimmage to offset any PayPal costs or monetary conversions.

3. What are the options for the remaining funds?

The funds continued to be at the disposal of Kimmage for defence against the UCI lawsuit for defamation. Upon the official announcement of the dismissal of the lawsuit, the funds will be dispersed to those who request a refund.

4. Why can’t the money just go to Kimmage?

The funds were collected for Kimmage’s defense against a UCI lawsuit. Any other use of the funds would be against the stated reason for which they were collected. Any other use of the funds could open up opportunities for those to file lawsuits against me in a variety of jurisdictions.

5. Are you being sued over the Kimmage Funds?

No. The lawsuit filed in a local Massachusetts court is for a business dissolution between myself and Lesli Cohen. The management of the Kimmage Fund is being used as evidence by Cohen for a favourable business dissolution verdict.

6. If there is a dispute between the former partners, why not have a third party manage the refunds?

A satisfactory neutral third party has not come forward. All parties proposed are associated with my former business partner, and based on the current legal proceedings, a turn over to any of those individuals increases my legal exposure exponentially.

7. Why not let the Massachusetts court decide where the money goes?

As the donors are from a massive cross section of nations, the decision of a US state court could most definitely be challenged. It could also cause additional legal liabilities as I am on record as accepting the liabilities associated with the fund.

8. Why do I have to notify you that I would like a refund?

The original transactions occurred almost a year ago. The attempts to track down and contact each individual donor proactively would take a tremendous amount of time. You may not have the same email address. You may not have the PayPal account anymore. It would greatly extend the timetable for completion of the refunds.

9. Why do I need to provide the email address, PayPal transaction number, the amount, and confirmation of my desire of a refund?

This allows for the proper cross-referencing of the information to ensure a valid refund. Due to the legalities of returning the money, it is important to provide specific proof of the transaction in order to confirm the person requesting the refund is actually you. This is why the PayPal transaction number is important, otherwise, you could dispute later that it wasn’t you who requested the refund. If you have any trouble providing all the required information, please contact kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com before submitting your request.

10. Why is there a 90 day notification period? Why can’t it be shorter?

As researched by legal representation in multiple jurisdictions, the 90 day window gives ample time for donors to be made aware of the refund opportunity. It minimizes any disputes that may arise due to a donor unaware of the refund activity.

11. What happens if the UCI restarts the lawsuit against Kimmage?

Due to the fact Brian Cookson has been elected UCI president, and he has clearly stated his opinion on the Kimmage situation, it is doubtful the lawsuit will continue forward. UCI employees have also confirmed it is likely the lawsuit will be dismissed by the end of 2013, and the reason for the activation of this course of action.

12. What percentage of my donation is being returned?

You will be receiving 70% of the donated funds back.

13. How did you arrive at the pro rata percentage?

An accountant has reviewed the transaction record, and the PayPal per transaction charges. The remaining funds were divided into the donation total to arrive at 70%.

14. Are you taking any management fees out of the remaining funds?

No. The only fees that have been deducted from the amount were the original PayPal transaction fees when the funds were sent to the original PayPal account.

 15. How will I know what is happening?

Once you submit your request, you will receive an email acknowledgement of the request. After the 90 day period expires, you will receive a second email acknowledging the amount being returned to you, and options on receiving the refund. You will then receive a third email stating the refund is on its way. There will also be periodic status updates on the website.

16. What happens to any unclaimed funds?

Once the refund requests have been audited, reviewed, and tabulated, the unclaimed funds will be calculated. At that time, Kimmage’s Swiss lawyer will be contacted and be given options for which charity the funds should be donated to. The charity will receive the donation in the name of Paul Kimmage.

 

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Statement on Kimmage Fund Controversy

It is never an easy situation when business partners begin to agree to disagree on the direction or philosophy of a business. Much has been said publicly about the Kimmage Fund situation. Most of it has been social media speculation, social media attacks, or social media defence. Almost all of it has painted me the worst of the worst for allegations that still are unfounded, unproven, and part of a case that is not about the Kimmage Fund, but the separation of business partners.

The legalities surrounding this case have been put on display by my former business partner in an attempt to rally some sort of campaign to right supposed wrongs. My family has been threatened, my house has been vandalised, and Spanish police even arrested one individual for their attempted actions against me.

The interesting part of this is the fact this isn’t because I’ve refused to pay Paul Kimmage’s legal bills, or refused to return the money to the donors, but because I have retained custody of the funds since the UCI lawsuit went into limbo. The only reason the Kimmage Fund management became an issue was due to the breakdown in the business relationship between my former business partner and myself. There were no questions about management from September 2012 until April of 2013.

I was custodian of the funds from the time they were received from the donors. I dispersed the funds to Kimmage to pay his only legal bills in December when his lawyer presented the bill. I was tasked with making sense of the variety of entities involved in the Cyclismas/Kimmage activities when no one else was willing to take any responsibility. Even now, any potential settlements still revolve around additional actions to ensure my former business partner does not have any legal or tax liabilities surrounding the fund, at my expense.

How is it possible that someone wants to retain control of a fund when they aren’t willing to accept the legal ramifications of the control? That’s a very good question and one that needs to be answered. There have been many individuals who have demanded I turn over the funds to them, but yet they still want me to hold the liabilities for the fund. Just because funds are transferred doesn’t mean I lose the responsibility. Because I am on record accepting responsibility means more potential trouble for me.

Much has been made by the media about my character, or my past actions, or my previous business dealings. Items published by certain sources only tell a fraction of the truth in order to confirm a particular agenda by those who I agitated during my time on social media. Many of the statements made by those “in the know” are completely false, or skewed to paint me as a villain. For five months I have refused to get involved in this sort of activity. I still refuse to stoop to such antics. I have chosen to pursue other work in the sport, as the events surrounding this controversy soured me on cycling media and cycling social media in general.

So why is this website being established now, and why can the funds be returned to the donors? We can thank the UCI elections for this.  I was an advocate for change at the top levels of the UCI for several years and it was a fitting denouement to be able to witness the change in person during the World Championships in Florence.

New UCI president Brian Cookson has stated on record of his desire to end the lawsuits and what he called shenanigans at the UCI. After speaking to several of those within the UCI in Florence, it is expected the lawsuit against Kimmage will be dismissed by the end of 2013. This clears the way for the donors to receive a pro rata refund, as my lawyer retained in the United States has stated on the record to those who started a petition demanding an updated status of the fund.

Simply put, all any donor needs to do is submit the form on the website, providing the information required to confirm their donation. After extensive consultation with Canadian and European lawyers versed in international law, it was decided the donors need to indicate they want a refund, rather than search out each individual donor. This removes potential liabilities if a blind refund is sent out without the donor’s acknowledgement.

The window for submitting a refund request will remain open until December 31st, 2013 in order to allow time for donors to find their way to the website and be made aware of the opportunity. Once you submit a request, you will receive an email acknowledging your request.

After the window closes, the requests will be tabulated, and those wishing a refund will receive 70% of their donation back, as only 30% of the funds were used. The accountant who performed the audit stated the actual percentage was 69.2%, but this is being rounded up to an even number.  Donors will then receive a second email outlining the options for receiving the refund, and a time frame in which the refund will be received. A third email will be sent when the refund is sent.

There is currently $64,821.75 US dollars in the fund.

So what happens to any funds left over? What if only part of the donors want their money back? After the refunds are totalled, communication will be sent to Kimmage’s Swiss lawyer asking him what charity Kimmage would like the money donated to. The donation of those funds will be made in Kimmage’s name, and he will receive any benefits associated with the donation.

This is the simplest solution to end one of the most trying times. It’s unfortunate that the situation has escalated the way it has with lawyers and mud-slinging from one side, but this is such the way life in general has gone in today’s digital age.

On a closing note, the comments section will be closed. I am not interested in engaging in debate from self-declared social activists. A contact email has been set up, kimmagefundrefund@gmail.com, but there will be no responses or acknowledgements to questions involving anything other than the refund mechanism. Please also note any threats of any kind will be forwarded to the proper authorities.

I agreed to take on the responsibility of the fund, to manage the fund, and to ensure right was done with the fund. I will see through this obligation until the end, no matter what it takes.

The submittal form for requesting a pro-rata refund of your donation goes live on Monday, October 7th, 2013.

 

- Aaron Brown

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