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Unilever settles $10.2 million class action lawsuit

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Hair loss from Suave product causes Unilever to settle for 10.2 million dollar lawsuit. Women reported having their hair become discolored, breaking off, falling out in clumps and suffering scalp burns after using Suave Keratin Infusion treatments. According to a report by Law 360 which was published on Feb. 10, in United States District Court in Illinois late last week, Unilever settled a class action lawsuit filed by consumers concerning their hair care product, Suave Keratin Infusion treatments. The company reportedly agreed to pay $10.2 million. The settlement will be split into two separate settlement funds, a $250,000 reimbursement fund and a $10 million injury fund. Plaintiffs who simply purchased the kits and did not use them will receive a $10 refund from the reimbursement fund.

The injury fund is set aside for those who suffered hair loss and other damages after using the product. $40 will be paid to plaintiffs who had additional expenses after using the kit but do not have receipts. Plaintiffs that still have their receipts will receive up to $800 for medical or hair treatment expenses that were needed after using the product and up to $25,000 will be paid to victims that suffered significant injury to their hair or scalp.

Some lawsuits claim deceptive advertising stating the manufacturer marketed Keratin Infusion hair product as formaldehyde free when it clearly was not. A carcinogen, formaldehyde is known to cause breathing problems and skin irritation. In March 2012, Unilever stopped manufacturing the product but plaintiffs argue there should have been an official recall. Suave Keratin Infusion treatments remained on store shelves and many women suffered hair damage after the fact.

Following “numerous consumer complaints,” a June 2012 FDA enforcement report determined the company’s actions constituted a recall of more than 380,000 kits. A class action lawsuit was filed in August 2012. Friday’s settlement of this class action lawsuit sought to cover all individuals who purchased the kit.

This settlement involved the Suave Professionals Keratin 30 Day Smooth Kit but a number of additional Suave Keratin Infusion lawsuits have been filed. The allegations claim that Unilever knew or should have known about the potential dangers. After using the Suave Keratin infusion treatments women report having their hair become discolored, breaking off, falling out in clumps and suffering scalp burns.

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