Figueroa v. Sharper Image
We objected to a proposed class action settlement involving Sharper Image’s “Ionic Breeze” air purifiers. The proposed settlement would have resolved the claims of over 3 million consumers nationwide who own the machines, which Consumer Reports has said are ineffective and pose serious health risks due to their emission of ozone. Under the settlement, Sharper Image would have provided a $19 coupon to customers who bought the Ionic Breeze devices. The coupons would have been redeemable toward the purchase of another Sharper Image product. The Federal District Court in Miami agreed with our position that the terms of the settlement itself were unfair. The court found that the coupon fails to disgorge “any wrongfully obtained gains” and concluded that the settlement – allowing nearly $2 million for plaintiffs’ counsel and only $19 coupons for each member of the class – “is below the range of recovery in which a settlement of this case may be considered fair.” Counsel for the objectors included Public Justice Staff Attorney Leslie Brueckner, Public Justice Goldberg, Waters & Kraus Fellow Amy Radon; Public Justice Executive Director Arthur Bryant; and Theodore J. Leopold and Diana Martin of Ricci~Leopold in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.
Renewed objections to the third amended settlement agreement, which the parties filed with the court on July 30, 2007. The renewed objections maintain that the relief proposed by the settlement (a $19 coupon and retrofit device) remains inadequate, as does the notice of the settlement.
District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division
Our objections to a proposed nationwide tobacco settlement that would have virtually extinguished all present and future tobacco-related litigation against the Liggett tobacco company.
Circuit Court, Mobile County, Alabama
Amicus curiae brief of the National Association for Consumer Advocates