SUMMARY OF ACTION

A class-action lawsuit was filed against Philips Oral Health Care, Inc. and Philips Electronics North America Corporation (“Philips”) in 2012 alleging that the company falsely advertised its Sonicare AirFloss as an easy replacement for floss when, in reality, the product — an oral irrigator — cannot remove plaque between the teeth the same way that traditional floss can.

In May 2013, the parties to the lawsuit reached a proposed settlement agreement that consists entirely of vouchers that the class members — California residents who purchased a new AirFloss in California between Jan. 1, 2011 and June 24, 2013 — can use towards the purchase of another Philips product (effectively forcing them to give the company more business in order to receive any compensation from the lawsuit). The settlement does not provide any cash reimbursement to the class members, nor does it order Philips to change the way it markets the AirFloss.

Because the settlement does not provide any real benefit to the class members and will have no deterrent effect on Philips, TINA.org filed a brief in October 2013 as amicus curiae opposing the proposed settlement.  However, on November 4, 2013, the Court approved the voucher settlement over TINA.org’s objection.

For more information about TINA.org’s position or to read the full brief, use the menu.

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(Latin for “friend of the courts.”) A person or organization that is not a party to a lawsuit but has a significant interest in the case and offers information that may be important to the court’s determination.

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