On September 6, 2023, the Honorable Judge Roseann A. Ketchmark of the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri, preliminarily approved a class action settlement in Jeffrey Tuter v. Freud America, Inc. (Case No. 22-CV-00282). You must submit a claim by November 20, 2023.
The proposed settlement will provide cash payments to all consumers who purchased Diablo-branded bonded abrasive wheels (“Covered Products”) in the United State between January 1, 2017 and September 6, 2023.
In the lawsuit, Plaintiff alleged that Defendant Freud America, Inc. (aka “Diablo”) manufactures and sells abrasive wheels that are defective because they fail to inform consumers that the wheels expire. Unbeknownst to consumers, the wheels have a shelf-life. The organic compounds begin to break down over a period of time which makes them susceptible to crack, break, and/or explode. This is highly dangerous to consumers when the product is in use because the abrasive wheels are attached to chop saws and grinders which cause the wheels to spin at a very high velocity so that they can grind and cut through metal, steel, and other materials.
If the abrasive wheel is used after its expiration date, there is a substantial risk that the product could break and seriously injure the consumer and anyone within the vicinity of the power tool.
Defendant has agreed to pay a maximum amount of $1,900,000.00, inclusive of all cash payments, incentive payments, administrative expenses, costs, and attorney’s fees. Class members who submit a claim form will have two options to receive cash payments from the settlement fund.
Under the first option (“Tier 1”), Defendant will provide all class members, without proof of purchase, a cash payment of $2.50 per unit purchased up to four units for a maximum amount of $10 per household.
Alternatively, under the second option (“Tier 2”), Defendant will provide all class members, with proof of purchase, a cash payment equal to the total amount of such purchases up to a maximum benefit amount of $50. Proof of purchase can be made by any of the following methods: a receipt, canceled check, or credit card statement/electronic statement showing payment.
In addition to these cash payments, Defendant has agreed to change its practices which have substantial value to the class and the public as it relates to health and safety. First, review and make modifications to the labeling or marketing of the Covered Products to provide a warning to improve the awareness and meaning of the date on the Covered Products by the manufacturers of the Covered products. And second, review its website and make modifications to provide a warning to improve the awareness and meaning of the date on the Covered Products by the manufacturers of the Covered Products.
A dedicated website (https://www.bondedabrasivediscsettlement.com/) has been created so all class members can obtain information about the settlement. The interactive website allows class members to access the Settlement Agreement, the Court’s Order Preliminarily Approving the Settlement, the Long-Form Notice, the Short-Form Notice, electronic versions of the Claims Form by which class members may submit such forms online, and a timeline of important dates and deadlines. You must submit a claim by November 20, 2023.
The Court has appointed Humphrey, Farrington, & McClain, P.C. to serve as counsel for the class. If you have any questions as to your eligibility to participate in the class settlement, feel free to contact attorney Paul D. Anderson.