Summary of Action

In 2013, the Gillette Company and Proctor & Gamble settled a class-action lawsuit over the allegedly deceptive marketing of Duracell Ultra batteries.  (Plaintiffs alleged that the companies falsely marketed Ultra batteries as lasting longer than the standard CopperTop batteries when that wasn’t the case.)  The settlement provided $5.68 million to the plaintiffs’ attorneys, $6 million worth of Duracell products to charities, $344,850 to the class (with each member who filed a claim receiving between $6 and $12), and a promise from Gillette to stop putting the allegedly misleading statements on the packaging of Ultra batteries, which, by the time the agreement was reached, had already been taken off the shelves and discontinued.

The District Court overruled class members’ objections to the agreement and granted final approval of the settlement. Objectors appealed the decision to the 11th Circuit, which affirmed the district court’s approval of the settlement.

In most cases, this would have been the end, but in December 2015, one of the objectors filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari to the United States Supreme Court, urging the Court to review this case.  Among other things, the petitioner argues that the 11th circuit decision is at odds with other circuits in the nation, and that the 11th circuit made a big mistake in ascribing value to meaningless injunctive relief (i.e., promising to refrain from making certain claims on the label of a product that is no longer being sold), as well as the donation of defendants’ own products to charities.

Believing that there is a great need for uniformity in how federal courts value injunctive relief in false advertising class-action lawsuits, filed an amicus curiae brief in support of the petition for review to the U.S. Supreme Court in January 2016.  However, on March 21, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari, meaning that it will not be reviewing this case.

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An order the U.S. Supreme Court issues to review a lower court’s judgment.

An order the U.S. Supreme Court issues to review a lower court’s judgment.


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