Judge asks for amendments to ‘hot fuel’ settlement

| October 22, 2012

Adjusted settlement motions have been filed in the “hot fuel” case after the judge presiding over the multi-district case asked nearly all of the refiners and retailers to adjust proposals.

On Sept. 24, jurors returned a verdict in favor of defendants QuikTrip, 7-Eleven and Kum & Go. The plaintiffs had argued warmer fuel contains less energy and therefore lower value and retailers did not disclose this theory nor the temperature of fuel sold and did not adjust prices accordingly.

Chief Judge Kathryn Vratil of the U.S. District Court of Kansas directed that entry of judgment be delayed pending ruling on other claims.

Before the Sept. 24 verdict, BP, Citco, Exxon Mobil, Motiva Enterprises, Equilon Enterprises and Sinclair Oil had reached settlement agreements with plaintiff, which remained subject to court approval.

On Sept. 28, Vratil declined preliminary approval to nearly all the agreements and scheduled a series of status conferences. On Oct. 19, reworked settlement proposals were filed with the court.

A bellwether trial has been discussed as possible to deal with the large number of cases remaining against other fuel providers and plaintiffs nationwide.  If that occurs, it may take place in California, Arizona, Nevada or some other state.

Last April Vratil approved Costco’s settlement.

Click here for information about the case.

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