NEWS

Ford Explorer Settlement Pays Lawyers

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The rich get rich and the poor get certificates. 

Consumers who owned 1999-01 Ford Explorers and charged that their SUV’s resale value dropped like a rock after the exploding-tire-rollover fiasco have finally gotten (a kind of) financial justice.

A California judge has approved a settlement of a class action lawsuit filed more then 2 years ago on behalf of 800,000 Explorer owners in California, Illinois, Texas and Connecticut.

Each will now be sent a certificate worth $500 — toward the purchase of a new Explorer.

If those unhappy with their 1999-2001 Explorers balk at buying a new one, they instead will be awarded a certificate worth $300 toward the purchase of any other new Ford, Mercury or Lincoln vehicle.

They must act fast. The certificates are only valid for the next 12 months. Use ’em or loose ’em.

While consumers who claim to have suffered financially will be given $300 to $500 certificates to atone for their lost equity, the lawyers who represented them in the class action suit will divvy up $25 million in fees for forcing Ford to print those coupons.

The lawyers won’t get coupons offering discounts on the purchase of a new Explorer or any Ford product, however.

Ford spokeswoman Kristen Kinley said the settlement ends all non-injury Explorer claims against Ford resulting from charges that the failed tires led vehicles to roll over.

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