Footloose sandwiches?

It’s not that Americans really need to eat larger servings of food.   But, hey, if you order the “footlong” at Subway, it should really measure out at 12 inches, right?  

The sandwich chain recently agreed to a class-action settlement after an Australian teen posted a Facebook image of his “footlong” sandwich measuring just 11 inches. Following up, the cheeky New York Post bought several of the sandwiches around New York City and found they too were 11 or 11.5 inches.

As part of the settlement, Subway agreed that – for at least four years – it will make sure its bread is at least 12 inches long when served. Here’s the challenge: that bread arrives at Subway shops as premade frozen breadsticks, all weighing the same. So the dough has to be thawed and then stretched. And thanks to the court settlement, that stretching has to make sure the final bun is 12 inches long. The chain is requiring its shops to carefully measure.

The judge approved $520,000 in attorneys’ fees and $500 for each of the 10 people who were representatives of the class.

While not as consequential as, say, the Volkswagen toxic emission scandal, the truth is the truth.  People are entitled to get what they pay for, whether it’s a car or a sandwich.  And lawyers are always there to ensure that they do. 

One thing the lawyers couldn’t do, however, is get any damages for potential class members.  As plaintiffs’ co-lead counsel Thomas Zimmerman put it: “It was difficult to prove monetary damages because everybody ate the evidence.”

Posted: 3/29/2016 2:02:01 PM by TCLE Editor | with 0 comments

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Thanks for stopping by On the Merits, the first blog from the Texas Center for Legal Ethics. On the Merits will take a close look at significant legal stories with an eye toward addressing the legal myths and misconceptions that turn up in news stories, movies, TV programs, websites, anonymous emails and other forms of mass communications. Our goal at On the Merits is to provide readers with a thoughtful examination of what the media and others are saying about the legal profession and to apply the frequently-absent context of how the legal system actually works.

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