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Iowa Tenants' Project
Martin Gaffey Class Action

This page provides information about the class action against Martin Gaffey, an Iowa City landlord. The case is Walton v. Gaffey, CVCV76909, currently pending in the Johnson County District Court. The class consists of residential tenants of Martin Gaffey for the 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15 lease terms. You cannot join a class action, you are automatically part of the class if you were a residential tenant of Martin Gaffey for the 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15 lease terms. Trial is set for April 17, 2019.

Class Action Case Proceedings

This case had summary & declaratory judgment and class certification granted, which was appealed and the case remanded. The case is pending. Here are the Gaffey Class Action district court proceedings and the Gaffey Class Action proceedings on appeal.

Class Action Notification

Here is the class action notification as ordered by the Court:

A class action, Walton v. Gaffey, case number CVCV76909 has brought by the Tenants' Project on behalf of tenants in the Johnson County District Court that challenges a number of provisions in the standard lease of Martin Gaffey. The Iowa Supreme Court found that the automatic carpet cleaning provision was prohibited under Iowa Code section 562A.11 and the District Court certified a class action on February 19, 2018. The class action also challenges the fine for smoking and pet charge. The damages sought in the class action are actual and punitive damages for the knowing and willful use of the automatic carpet cleaning provision in the lease and actual damages for the inclusion and/or enforcement of the smoking fine and pet charge.

Joan Walton is the class representative. Her address is 957 Boston Way #5 Coralville, IA 52241. The class consists of all residential tenants of Martin Gaffey for 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15 and if you were a tenant for these years you do not need to do anything There is no way to join the class action as all eligible tenants are automatically included in the class. However if you do not wish to be part of the class you may choose to opt out or exclude yourself from the class. You can do this by sending an e-mail to with your name, current mailing address, address as Gaffey tenant and when you were a Gaffey tenant by January 3, 2019. If the class members fail to opt out, even if they were not aware of the class action, they are still bound by the ruling in the case. The court has appointed attorney Christopher Warnock of the Tenants' Project as class counsel to represent the class.

Other than the possibility of being awarded damages there are no financial consequences to the class and there are no counterclaims. Inquiries may be directed to