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Discussion Starter #1
Here you go folks, $15 for each one of you on me. Don't spend it all in one place :nevreness:. I went to buy another mower a while back and noticed everything was now labeled in Torque and not Horse Power. I never asked why, but maybe this law suit had something to do with it?



Heads up, when I filled out the form, it took a while to go through after hitting submit. But it did eventually.

http://www.lawnmowersettlement.com/
 

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And you guys allll thought that the grass-roots, CMF founded, Canadian Lawn Cuttors Association had no teeth, was just a dull joke, didn't you?!?

Well, look who's laughing now!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
And you guys allll thought that the grass-roots, CMF founded, Canadian Lawn Cuttors Association had no teeth, was just a dull joke, didn't you?!?

Well, look who's laughing now!
It's a little off season. But glad to have everyone raking it in.
 

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Do we have any idea what the lawsuit was about. Highly unlikely it has anything to do with changing the ratings of motors from HP to Torque.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Do we have any idea what the lawsuit was about. Highly unlikely it has anything to do with changing the ratings of motors from HP to Torque.
From their FAQ.

The Class Actions claim that the companies who manufactured the engines and the lawn mowers containing them mislabelled the products to show a higher horsepower rating than what was actually contained in the lawn mower.
 

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I noticed the same thing when buying a smowblower some years back. No horsepower ratings. The Honda I ended up getting was a 724. It has a 24” width, hmmm... I wonder how many horsepower it has?
 

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I noticed the same thing when buying a smowblower some years back. No horsepower ratings. The Honda I ended up getting was a 724. It has a 24” width, hmmm... I wonder how many horsepower it has?
Can you say "class action"? Call up the lawyers handling the lawnmower suit. See if they can be encouraged. It should not take much, as the lawyers will probably get paid about 33% of the gross take, compared to $15 a head (or some other token amount) for members of the class. But, if you get in first, you can be the "class representative", lending your name as plaintiff. That will entitle you to receive some measure of "compensation" or an "honorarium".

Here's an example:

Kidd v. Venue Financial Ltd., 2017 BCSC 1612

PRACTICE • Solicitor’s fees — Representative plaintiff — Compensation — Plaintiff bringing action alleging the defendant company charged a criminal rate of interest for "title loans" — Parties reaching an early settlement due to risk of defendant’s potential insolvency — Parties applying for class action certification, an order approving the proposed settlement and class counsel’s contingency fee as well as an honorarium of $2,000 payable to the representative plaintiff — Application allowed.

https://www.courts.gov.bc.ca/jdb-txt/sc/17/16/2017BCSC1612.htm

The compensation paid there was $2,000, but the settlement was modest. Amounts of $5,000 or better are common. In Kidd, the settlement was a paltry $310,000, far less than amounts usually seen in class actions. The lawyers got fees of $108,000 plus disbursements out of it. While the amount involved was puny, the matter was settled quickly, so I am sure the lawyers ate off the file just the same.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
^ What happens with any money left over? Obviously not everyone entitled is going to fill out the forms and get paid.
 

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^ What happens with any money left over? Obviously not everyone entitled is going to fill out the forms and get paid.
A good question, ST.

Generally, the way these things work is for all settlement proceeds to be distributed to members of the class who file claims. To that extent, perhaps you did yourself a disservice in spreading the word here. In the lawnmower case, the "distribution protocol" provides, in part:

"All End-User entitlements could be either increased or decreased on a prorated basis depending on the number of eligible claims made by Class Members against the End Users Fund." So payments will increase if there are not as many claimants and expected and they will decrease should more claims be made. So, those $15 payouts might turn out to be larger or smaller.

Some discussion of "distribution protocol" considerations may be seen here:

Fairhurst v. De Beers Canada Inc., 2018 BCSC 59, at para. 29 et seq.

https://www.courts.gov.bc.ca/jdb-txt/sc/18/00/2018BCSC0059.htm
 

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Discussion Starter #10
To that extent, perhaps you did yourself a disservice in spreading the word here.

It was a calculated business decision. Keep it to myself, and get an extra $0.95, or spread the word and get multiple karma points :)


Thanks for the answer. Interesting for sure.


Coincidentally, today I got a cheque for a bit over $20 from a class action against UPS. I remember getting the notice saying I'm getting money back because I was overcharged UPS brokerage fees around 2007. I didn't have to do anything for it, but I believe I could've opted out.
 

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It was a calculated business decision. Keep it to myself, and get an extra $0.95, or spread the word and get multiple karma points :)


Thanks for the answer. Interesting for sure.


Coincidentally, today I got a cheque for a bit over $20 from a class action against UPS. I remember getting the notice saying I'm getting money back because I was overcharged UPS brokerage fees around 2007. I didn't have to do anything for it, but I believe I could've opted out.
I bought a Toro mower with a Briggs and Stratton engine in about 1984, a bit ahead of the class period. But perhaps I misremember, and it was 1994. I don't think I'll claim anyway. If you like, I'll draft up an assignment to you of my right to claim. Maybe just have your solicitor call my solicitor to get it all in tow. I suppose your solicitor can do the drafting, submitting it to my solicitor for approval. That will give you a double dip. Some early redemption of karma points.
 

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Other than the principle of punishing the manufacturers for misleading claims (and apparently collusion), it's doubtful if many ordinary consumers suffered any real economic harm over a walk-behind mower that may not have had as much HP as it claimed. The ones who probably suffered most from inadequate performance would more likely be contractors with riding mowers.

From a technical point of view, horsepower ratings for small engines (and large ones too) has always been a bit of a game; with definitions ranging from Peak Horsepower (usually for only a few moments or even seconds); Sustained Horsepower (for different periods of time); Standby Horsepower; Continuous Duty Horsepower; sustained horsepower after so many hours of operation; etc. I'm not surprised that the manufacturers were fudging figures; just that they were doing so on such a large scale, and effectively in conclusion.

If the same shady practice was being followed with snowblower engines, a difference in HP would be more noticeable in performance.
 

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From their FAQ.
The Class Actions claim that the companies who manufactured the engines and the lawn mowers containing them mislabelled the products to show a higher horsepower rating than what was actually contained in the lawn mower.
My point was that it was unlikely due to a simple change from HP to Torque. This case was more about a reduction in stated specifications.

I have a 16.5Hp lawn tractor. It is quite the work horse (sorry for the pun) but I would be surprised if it could pull as much as even 2 very small horses. Some of the issue is the wheels getting traction, but the main issue is that it is no where near the same power as 16.5 horses.

This is not uncommon. I have no idea how old and sick the horse was when the very first guy decided to do a measurement to standardize its power but I suspect it must have had some issues. The problem with torque is I never remember torques. With HP, I think of my last motor and what its rating was and then I can get an idea of how the next might work. With torques, I simply have no idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
My point was that it was unlikely due to a simple change from HP to Torque. This case was more about a reduction in stated specifications.
You're slightly confusing the 2 issues. The law suit is because of exaggerated horsepower claims. But I said I noticed around 2012 or 2013, that all of a sudden all horsepower ratings were removed from small engines. Lawn mowers, snowblowers, etc.. So maybe when the manufacturers got wind of the lawsuit, they switched from horsepower to torque.


The problem with torque is I never remember torques. With HP, I think of my last motor and what its rating was and then I can get an idea of how the next might work. With torques, I simply have no idea.
As the saying goes, people pay for horsepower, but actually use torque. And you know, this lawsuit might seem frivolous, as often they do, but engine power ratings are pretty important. Someone like me with acreage will struggle to work with an under powered riding mower or snow blower. And like Tim Allen used to say, you could never have enough power :encouragement:
 

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But I said I noticed around 2012 or 2013, that all of a sudden all horsepower ratings were removed from small engines. Lawn mowers, snowblowers, etc.. So maybe when the manufacturers got wind of the lawsuit, they switched from horsepower to torque.
Sure, but saying you noticed the switch from HP to Torque, does not mean the switch had anything to do with motors sold with less power. That is the part you left out.
 

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ahhhh....just as im spending the last of my loblaw bread money...
just submitted claim on my 2007 MTD mower..
"muchas GRASS-ias" Senior STech!
 

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Small gas engine retailers are not the only ones who have been playing a marketing game with horsepower ratings. I am old enough to know that the "standard" electric motor you needed for a 10" table saw or radial arm saw was a 1 HP, likely based on CEMA/NEMA ratings. That was the case 40-60 years ago. The largest motor you could run on a 120 volt, 15 ampere cat. was 1 HP (and still is). But sometime after I bought my own radial arm saw about 40 years ago, I noticed Sears selling essentially the same model advertised as "2HP" or even "2-1/2HP". There was no miracle advance in electric motor technology that suddenly made them twice as powerful. The later models drew exactly the same amperage. The marketers simply redefined the horsepower rating as the one it could sustain for a few seconds before the overload protection tripped. In a way they were essentially taking the momentary peak torque it could sustain, extrapolating it out as if it could sustain that torque for some longer period, and converting the result to a horsepower rating.

I'm surprised some marketing genius didn't get the bright idea of "Let's put a 3/4 HP motor in it, and call it 1-1/2HP!" But with this kind of application the performance difference would have been too noticeable; and consumers and reviewers could compare different models by looking up the actual current draw, whatever claim the marketer made about horsepower.
 

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OK. So this particular issue had already come up in November. That was when I had first applied for my $15. Not sure where I heard about it at that time. Since then, I have had Stech point it out on this thread, my wife told me about it yesterday, probably from Facebook and I got an email from a friend who told me about it, the same day.

So this thing is now viral. What I am wondering about is how they can take a $7.5 million dollar settlement and divide it by what should amount to around 500 million people, and somehow we all eventually get $15.

Anyone else thought about this problem in math. I am wondering if it is a scam. Perhaps to get email addresses. Not sure. Even a grade 4 math graduate should have been able to figure out this was not going to work out.

My point is. If you applied and selected "email transfer" for your payment. DON'T DO IT. I would let the $15 go. They can easily create a site/program to appear like you are depositing the money into your bank account. If you have ever done an email transfer you know what I am talking about. At least select payment by cheque.
 

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I don't participate in these class action lawsuits that come along occasionally. Aside from the hassle, I'm not willing to provide any personal information just to have a chance at a $15 or $20 settlement. Cashiers don't even get a postal code from me if they ask (as sometimes they do). I also have no need to be present on facebook, pinterest, twitter, etc.
 
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