Last post on Feb 08, 2012 at 9:06 PM
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Honda Odyssey, Car Warranties,, Auto Repair,, Van
#1 of 2 Alin Class Action re: Condenser Damage; Objections Due 2/27/12
Feb 06, 2012 (3:00 pm)
The attorneys in the Alin class action, covering Odyssey owners whose condensers were damaged/destroyed on impact with road debris, have reached a proposed settlement and gotten Preliminary Approval. More information can be found at www.alinlitigation.com.
However, after reading the Settlement Agreement, Honda Odyssey owners are clearly being treated unfairly and stripped of their legal rights by Honda and Plaintiff Class Counsel. The relevant section of Art. 4 of the Settlement, available on the Settlement website, reads as follows (I summarized each subsection in [brackets]):
Section 4.1 "Odyssey Sub-Class" Owners (Settlement Agreement p. 12):
Subsection (a) [Reimbursement for In-Warranty Class Members]: Honda will reimburse 100% of any Out-of-Pocket Expense (as defined in Art. 1 herein) made by members of the Odyssey Sub-Class to repair Condenser Road Debris Damage (as defined in Art. 1 herein) where the repairs were or are performed for Road Debris Damage which occurred within the original 3-year/36,000 mile warranty period. Honda will NOT reimburse members of Odyssey Sub-Class for Condenser Road Debris Damage that occurred outside the original 3-year/36,000 mile warranty period, even if the member of the Odyssey Sub-Class was covered by an Extended Service Contract. In order to receive reimbursement, Class Members must submit a Claim Form in the manner described below.
Subsection (b) [Free Condenser Screen (Reimbursed MSRP) + Reimburse $20 of Professional Labor Cost for Installation]: Honda will make available to Odyssey Sub-Class members a screen that is intended to protect the air conditioning condenser of the Odyssey Sub-Class vehicles from Condenser Road Debris Damage. Honda will reimburse Odyssey Sub-Class members for the purchase price of the screen, up to the full MSRP of $35.06, and will also reimburse $20 of the labor costs associated with the installation of the screen if the screen is purchased and installed on an Odyssey Sub-Class vehicle. This reimbursement shall be made even if the installation is performed by a non-Honda authorized installer. If the installation is performed directly by a class member no payment will be made towards labor. The screen and its MSRP will be listed at the Honda “estore.” Honda will recommend a .6 hour labor time to Authorized Honda Dealerships for installation.
This means that a clear design fault is being treated as a warranty claim. Additionally, Honda will only be required to reimburse Odyssey owners for their out of pocket expenses repairing damage to the condenser caused by road debris where that damage occurred within the original 3 year/36,000 mile warranty period. If your original warranty has expired, even if you had an Extended Service Contract, you are excluded from this part of the Settlement, and will only be able to get the "up to" $35 reimbursement for the MSRP of a "condenser screen" and $20 towards professional installation.
Repairing a damaged compressor costs much more than this, and the Settlement Agreement fails to compensate out of warranty Odyssey owners for this expense. Indeed, it explicitly excludes them from recovering these expenses. But TSX and CR-V owners will recieve pro-rated compensation (Subsection 4.2(b), Settlement Agreement p. 13; Subsection 4.3(b), p. 14). The Settlement Agreement does not explain why TSX and CR-V owners are treated more fairly than Odyssey owners.
Additionally, Art. 7 ("Releases") (Settlement Agreement, p. 17) releases Honda from liability, now or in the future, relating to compressor damage causd by road debris on the Odyssey, even though out of warranty Odyssey owners will not be compensated beyond reimbursement for the MSRP of a protective grill and $20 toward professional installation of the grill. Once the Settlement goes into effect, Odyssey owners will thus lose their legal right to bring suit individually against Honda relating to the compressor damage.
The best chance to avoid being subjected to this unfair and unjust settlement is to write a letter to the Court explaining why you object. If enough Odyssey owners complain, the Court is considerably more likely to modify or reject the Settlement and force Honda and Plaintiff's Counsel to come up with fair compensation for Odyssey owners. Please do your part by telling the court what you think about the proposed settlement.
Write the Clerk of the Court, referencing "Civil Action No.: 2:08-cv-04825, Alin v. American Honda Motor Company, Inc." Your letter MUST reference the Civil Action Number. Also, be sure to include the year model you own and your problems with your car.
Letters MUST BE POSTMARKED no later than February 27, 2012.
The Clerk's address is:
Clerk of the Court
District of New Jersey
Federal Building & U.S. Courthouse
50 Walnut Street
Newark, NJ 07101
#2 of 2 Re: Alin Class Action re: Condenser Damage; Objections Due 2/27/12 [silverski91]
Feb 08, 2012 (9:06 pm)
I agree that the "proposed settlement " is patently unfair to Odyssey owners and all that are within the class should follow the instructions and file their objections quickly. Suggest that you also notify your state Attorney General who should be involved in CAFA (Class Action Fairness Act) and would have received CAFA notices from the class attorneys.