One of our readers sent us in the full text of the class action notice as given to him by the law firms participating in the suit. The Nature Of This Lawsuit section is particularly interesting as it describes the nature of the problems that have been reported about 1991-1995 Jeep 4.0L models.
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF COOK COUNTY, ILLINOIS COUNTY DEPARTMENT, CHANCERY DIVISION
Terry L. Hasek, Alan Block, Mitchell E. Bianchin, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, Plantiffs, v. Chrysler Corporation, Defendant.
No. 94 CH 11500 Judge Thomas P. Durkin
NOTICE OF CLASS ACTION
TO: CURRENT OR FORMER OWNERS OR LESSEES OF MODEL YEAR 1991-1995 JEEP VEHICLES EQUIPPED WITH 4.0 LITER ENGINES.
An Order of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, dated December 19, 1997, determined that this lawsuit would be maintained on behalf of a Class defined as:
All original purchasers or persons with the rights of original purchasers of model year 1991 through 1995 Jeep vehicles that were equipped with 4.0 liter engines.
You are a member of the Class if you purchased or leased a new 1991-1995 Jeep equipped with a 4.0 liter engine. You are a Class member even if you subsequently sold or traded your Jeep. You are also a member of the Class if you are a "Second Buyer/Owner" as defined in Chrysler‚s warranty. Because who qualifies as a "Second Buyer/Owner" varies by model year, you should consult your Chrysler warranty to determine whether you qualify.
NATURE OF THIS LAWSUIT This lawsuit alleges that 1991-1995 model year 4.0 liter Jeep engines have a defect that causes unusually strong impacts of the pistons to the walls of the cylinders. The lawsuit further alleges that the impacts caused by the defect produce a diesel-like knocking noise which is itself a product defect. The lawsuit further alleges that Chrysler has acknowledged the noise and has labeled it "idle knock" or "diesel noise", but has refused or been unable to fix the problem.
Two claims are asserted based on Chrysler's written warranty, which promises repair or adjustment of defective parts. Both claims are based on Chrysler's alleged refusal or inability to repair the alleged defects in these engines.
Plantiffs have also asserted a claim for common law fraud based on Chrysler's alleged failure to disclose the idle knock or diesel noise problem to the public at the time of sale. Plantiffs seek money damages for each member of the Class.
Chrysler has denied the allegations and asserted several defenses.
The Court has not decided the merits of the claims or of Chrysler‚s defenses. This notice is not an expression of an opinion by the Court as to the merits of any claim or denial.
THE COURT PROCEEDINGS This lawsuit was filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois in 1994. The parties are presently engaged in discovery, the phase of a lawsuit where the parties exchange information that is relevant to the claims and defenses asserted. Pursuant to an order of the Court, discovery will end in early 1999.
The trial is scheduled to begin June 14, 1999.
For a more complete understanding of the contentions and the proceedings in this case, you may consult the files relating to this lawsuit which are available for your inspection at the office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, Chancery Division, Richard J. Daley Center, Chicago, Illinois, 60602.
WHAT YOU SHOULD DO If you are a member of the Class and wish to participate in this lawsuit, no action on your part is necessary. You will automatically be represented by Plantiffs and Class Counsel and will be bound by any judgement entered in this case whether favorable or not. If the Class is unsuccessful in this case, Class members will be under no obligation to pay attorneys‚ fees or expenses. If the Class is successful in this case, Class Counsel will petition the Court for payment of their fees and expenses from any settlement or judgement obtained. Any Class member seeking to intervene or otherwise appear in the action may do so with leave of court.
If you are a Class member and do not wish to participate in this lawsuit, the Court will exclude you from the Class if you request exclusion. Persons who request exclusion from the Class will not be bound by any judgement in this case. To be excluded from the Class you must mail the attached Request for Exclusion postmarked on or before June 01, 1999.
WHO SHOULD I CONTACT IF I HAVE QUESTIONS? Questions concerning this lawsuit should be directed to either of the following law firms which have been appointed Counsel to the Class:
Beeler, Schad & Diamond, P.C. 332 South Michigan Avenue Suite 1000 Chicago, IL 60604 (312) 957-1039 Attention: Jeep Paralegal
Edward T. Joyce & Associates, P.C. 11 S. LaSalle Street Suite 1600 Chicago, IL 60603 (312) 641-2600 Attention: Jeep Paralegal
Dated February 9, 1999
By the Order of the Honorable Thomas P. Durkin Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois