Allen v. Similasan Corp.
CEI’s Center for Class Action Fairness (CCAF) filed an objection on July 1, 2016, to the proposed settlement in Allen v. Similasan, which proposed to pay the class nothing and the attorneys $545,000.
The settlement purported to provide injunctive relief in the form of label disclaimers and a website page hosted by the defendant homeopathic drug manufacterer. In fact, these appear to be promotional tools for the defendant and they provide no relief to the class in any event. Because the settlement provides nothing in exchange for release, CEI objected on behalf of absent class members, and urged the court to reject the cynical payday requested by class counsel. On July 28, 2016, the Attorneys General of eight states filed a brief supporting CCAF’s position and urging the court to reject the settlement. On August 10, 2016, the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of California denied the settlement and the motion for attorneys’ fees.
UPDATE: On April 12, 2017, the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of California granted preliminary approval of a greatly improved class action settlement.
In a victory for CCAF, the new settlement provides a $700,000 fund, which will provide more than $500,000 to class members, as a result of the Center’s involvement in the litigation. The original settlement provided only attorneys’ fees and meaningless label changes to class members.
The final hearing for settlement approval is set for August 7, 2017.