Pampers settlement thrown out over excessive attorney fees

The 6th Circuit rejected a class action lawsuit settlement that would have given roughly 90 percent of settlement funds to the plaintiff’s attorneys

This time, the babies weren’t the only ones crying foul. Last Friday, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals threw out a class action lawsuit settlement plaintiffs reached with Proctor & Gamble Co. (P&G), saying the attorneys who brought the suit were receiving too high a share.

In 2011, P&G agreed to pay $3 million settlement after a few dozen plaintiffs had claimed that Pampers Dry Max diapers caused rashes on babies. The attorneys that brought the suit were to receive $2.73 million of that total. Each of plaintiffs in the suit would receive $1,000 for their troubles.

A Washington nonprofit, the Center for Class Action Fairness, challenged the settlement in the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. The 6th Circuit ruling agreed with the nonprofit, saying most Pampers customers who had bought the diapers received little benefit from the agreement. A district court had approved the original settlement.

P&G now has a decision on their hands. They may move to reach a new settlement, or they may also move to dismiss the case entirely. “We appreciate the court’s consideration of the legal issues in this case and we’ll study our options in light of this opinion,” a P&G spokesman said on Monday.


Want more about the Pampers case? Check out The Wall Street Journal for more coverage.

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Assistant Editor

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Zach Warren

Zach Warren is Assistant Editor of InsideCounsel magazine, where he oversees online content submissions and administers InsideCounsel's enewsletters. Zach specializes in new media and multimedia...

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