Remington Settles ‘Faulty Trigger’ Lawsuit, Lays Off 122 Employees

The Remington Model 700. There are hundreds of variants, but the core has remained consistent for more than half a century.  Read more: Improving The Remington 700–Part 1–Buy a Rifle

It’s been a good news/bad news sorta week for Big Green.

Bad News

First, the bad news. Remington announced that it has laid off more than 120 workers at its factory in Ilion, New York.

“The small arms industry is facing significant near-term challenges related to slowing order velocity and high channel inventories; a dynamic from which Remington is not immune,” said Jessica Kallam, Remington’s manager of media relations and public affairs, in a statement.

“After exploring all the options available to us, we are compelled to reduce our work force by releasing 122 team members today at our Ilion, N.Y. site,” the statement continued. “As we move forward, we will continue to monitor all segments of the business for growth opportunities.”

Remington has had a facility in Ilion since the 19th century which has become part of the lifeblood of that small upstate community home to around 8,000 residents. Even with the layoffs, Remington still employs 960 people, according to Ilion Mayor Terry Leonard.

Mayor Leonard expressed concern about the fate of the plant’s future, given that Remington opened a new facility down in Huntsville, Alabama in 2014. As part of consolidation efforts, 231 Ilion workers were let go in August and November of 2014.

“Should they ever just close down totally, it would be a total catastrophe for the entire area here,” the mayor told Reuters.

While Remington insists that the changes in personnel are due to market conditions, at least one state lawmaker sees this as a result of the draconian NY SAFE Act of 2013 that ratcheted up regulations on firearms in the Empire State.

“It’s very troubling that 122 of our neighbors have lost their jobs due to poor economic policies pushed by Gov. Cuomo and Assembly Democrats as well as the SAFE Act,” said New York State Assemblyman Brian Miller of the 101st District in an interview with WKTV.

“Make no mistake, there is a direct correlation,” he added. “My staff and I remain fully committed to helping those affected by layoffs and will assist them and their families in any way we can.”

Obama’s effect on gun sales.

The Cuomo regime and the SAFE Act may share in some of the blame but there is little doubt that gun sales have waned since Obama left office. FBI Background checks (a bellwether for gun sales) are down 17 percent in January and February this year when compared to the same period in 2016.

Many predict that with Trump in the White House, the decline in sales will continue for the foreseeable future.

“We do believe that having a Republican in the White House…negatively impacts gun sales in that it effectively eliminates any threat of new gun regulation for the foreseeable future,” said James Hardiman, managing director of equities research for Wedbush Securities Inc.

Hardiman told Reuters that he forecasts a 10% to 15% decline in FBI background checks for 2017.

The move by Big Green follows a number of other belt tightenings around the industry, including reported layoffs at SilencerCo and the announcement this week that outdoor retailer Gander Mountain would file Chapter 11 bankruptcy and close 32 locations.

Good News

Now, for the good news. A federal judge approved a settlement that arose from the notorious “faulty trigger” class action lawsuit against Remington.

Why is it good news for Big Green?

Well, it puts to bed the longstanding claim that throughout the years Remington was making rifles with defective trigger mechanisms that would fire a round without the trigger being pulled.

Moreover, the payout is minimal. Only $12.5 million, with each class representative receiving $2,500 after attorney fees and expenses for the plaintiffs have been subtracted.

That’s chump change compared to estimates that suggested that Remington would be on the hook for almost half a billion dollars considering that there are upwards of 7.5 million rifles in circulation that would allegedly need fixing.

The reason the payout was so small is that the claims rate was only .29 percent. In other words, a relatively small number of individuals — about 22,000 — filed claims after Remington announced the recall on their rifles at the start of settlement negotiations a few years back.

In the opinion, the court noted the dissatisfaction with the low turnout but indicated that doesn’t mean that the settlement reached was unfair.

“While the Court remains disappointed with the claims rate, the claims rate does not dictate whether the notice provided was the best notice practicable under the circumstances. The claims rate does not govern whether the settlement is fair, reasonable, or adequate,” states the opinion.

The court also noted that Remington did do enough to satisfy the court in its publicity of the recall effort, which will continue for an additional 18 months and possibly increase the number of claims.

The question has to be asked to what extent there was a defect with the trigger mechanisms in these rifles? With 7.5 million in circulation, wouldn’t there be hundreds of thousands of people filing claims? Wouldn’t there be videos all over Youtube of rifles firing randomly?

Paul Helinski, the owner and founder of GunsAmerica, addressed these questions in a recent article, entitled, “Remington Fights Back Against Fake News 60 Minutes Attack.

In it the article, Paul argues that the claims of accidental discharges are either widely overblown or completely fabricated, concluding that “there is nothing wrong with the Remington 700, and there never was.”

To that end, Remington has consistently denied any wrongdoing. And, finally, they can move on.

Below, you’ll find information along with links pulled from the Remington website that pertains to the settlement.

IF YOU OWN CERTAIN REMINGTON FIREARMS, YOU MAY BE ELIGIBLE FOR BENEFITS FROM A CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT.

A proposed nationwide Settlement has been preliminarily approved in a class action lawsuit involving certain Remington firearms. The class action lawsuit claims that trigger mechanisms with a component part known as a trigger connector are defectively designed and can result in accidental discharges without the trigger being pulled. The lawsuit further claims that from May 1, 2006 to April 9, 2014, the X-Mark Pro® trigger mechanism assembly process created the potential for the application of an excess amount of bonding agent, which could cause Model 700 or Seven bolt-action rifles containing such trigger mechanisms to discharge without a trigger pull under certain limited conditions. The lawsuit contends that the value and utility of these firearms have been diminished as a result of these alleged defects. Defendants deny any wrongdoing.

WHO’S INCLUDED?

The Settlement provides benefits to:

  1. Current owners of Remington Model 700, Seven, Sportsman 78, 673, 710, 715, 770, 600, 660, XP-100, 721, 722, and 725 firearms containing a Remington trigger mechanism that utilizes a trigger connector;
  2. Current owners of Remington Model 700 and Model Seven rifles containing an X-Mark Pro trigger mechanism manufactured from May 1, 2006 to April 9, 2014 who did not participate in the voluntary X-Mark Pro product recall prior to April 14, 2015; and
  3. Current and former owners of Remington Model 700 and Model Seven rifles who replaced their rifle’s original Walker trigger mechanism with an X-Mark Pro trigger mechanism.

WHAT DOES THE SETTLEMENT PROVIDE?

Settlement Class Members may be entitled to: (1) have their trigger mechanism retrofitted with a new X-Mark Pro or other connectorless trigger mechanism at no cost to the class members; (2) receive a voucher code for Remington products redeemable at Remington’s online store; and/or (3) be refunded the money they spent to replace their Model 700 or Seven’s original Walker trigger mechanism with an X-Mark Pro trigger mechanism.

HOW CAN I OBTAIN BENEFITS?

Submit a Claim Form. You can submit a claim form electronically.

{ 23 comments… add one }
  • gary l. black November 9, 2017, 10:44 pm

    I bought model 700 new in 1973 almost shot a man when chambering a round it fired with out toutching the trigger did same thing when un loading ,needless to say been in gun case for 30 years

  • Remington 700 Shooter August 14, 2017, 6:59 am

    Haha, Obama is the greatest gun salesman in America 🙂

  • Andrew N March 23, 2017, 12:11 am

    Sure, these layoffs have nothing to do with New York’s attitude towards firearms. And I have a beautiful bridge I would like to sell you. The Ilion Plant will be shut down within 10 years tops. The ONLY way to save it would be to completely reverse New York’s politics and embrace the gun culture. I don’t see that happening. They keep hiring in Alabama by some strange coincidence…

  • Jeffrey B. O'Kon March 21, 2017, 2:46 am

    I have owned and operated several Remington Rifles both professionally and as a sportsman. I have used Remington 700 series rifles as a Sheriffs Deputy and U.S.Soldier. In over 30 years of service I have never experienced a negligent or equipment related failure using these weapons. I have not personally tested everyone of the 7.5 million or so Remington rifles built by Remington. However in all cases where I have observed a negligent discharge involving one of these rifles, it was just that;” negligence of the shooter ” One must be at least skeptical when money and civil litigation are involved, after all it’s a hole lot more comforting to say “the gun did it” or “I didn’t even touch it, it went off by it self” than to just say I screwed up!
    Signed,
    A professional who’s seen it to many times

  • PAUL W. March 20, 2017, 11:57 am

    some years ago, I was visiting the office of a customer.
    His coworkers were razing him about the hunting trip
    the previous weekend.
    BOOM!
    Hole in the roof of the 4 door ranch truck and everyone’s
    ears ringing.
    Remington 700.
    at least it was the roof when he set the butt on the floorboard!

  • Russell Quinton March 17, 2017, 7:43 pm

    I also had a firing incident and I wonder how many people in the lawsuit had the incident happen for the same reason mine happened. Mine was caused by STUPIDITY. We lightened the trigger pull to much on my Remington 700 BDL 7 mm mag. The rifle was stole, I miss it.
    Remington is a great company producing great weapons, I wish them luck in the future and with the lawsuits.

  • Don March 17, 2017, 3:56 pm

    I have owned a Model 700 variant (the rifle is currently at my parents home several thousand miles away) since 1983 when my grandfather, the original owner, passed away. The rifle was manufactured in the mid to late 50’s and chambered for 270 Winchester rounds. It had been used for at least two hunting trips each year as well as target practice since purchased through 2004 when I left it as I moved via airplane. I know that it has been used three times since 2007, and may have been used more than that. My grandfather never said anything about it discharging on its own, nor my brother who has used it lately, and I never had any trouble with it. My brother also purchased a 700 series rifle chambered in 243 Winchester as his first rifle in the early 80’s and used it for several years without fail. These are the only Remington rifles in my immediate family, but I see that the reported failures above seem to have occurred with Magnum chamberings. Perhaps this is the case? At any rate, ALL reported consumer related issues need to be carefully examined for truth. Remember GMC/Chevrolet pickups tanks that would explode from side impact? NBC news even ran apiece on them, and later ADMITTED that they had to use incendiary devices to produce the reported results. I grew up in Montana farmland and can tell you that this example was a bunch of hogwash. Anyone care to guess how many 1973-1987 GMC & Chevy pickups are still in use there? Just be careful of the libtard fascist controlled news networks.

  • Paul Peter March 17, 2017, 2:01 pm

    When you have a hemorrhoid for a Governor with all his dingle berries that’s what happens. We lost a lot of companies in up sate because of him and now he’s talking running for president …Yea Right more BS from the high hemorrhoid and his dingle berries

  • Gary March 17, 2017, 2:01 pm

    I currently own 3 Remington Model 700 BDL rifles, all of which fall into the build dates recall. I can honestly say I don’t believe the story is fabricated as I’ve seen first hand. Here is my story:
    While hunting deer, the rifle did not discharge a few times. I chalked it up to bad ammunition and purchased newer, higher end rounds. While my two buddies and I stood in a close group inspecting the misfire, I chambered another round per request. Unfortunately, my 7mm Mag discharged as I locked down the bolt without anyone’s finger on or near the trigger. I thank the grace of God that this happened without incident and it haunts me to this day as to what could have happened. I caught hell for the accidental misfire with my buddies for years. One of them does not hunt with us at all anymore.
    With this being said, I have not had any issues with any other Remington firearm I own. I’m not so certain I will be jumping on the lawsuit bandwagon either. After multiple range uses and dozens upon dozens of rounds shot through my 7mm Mag, this rifle has not misfired.
    I’m truthfully torn as to having it repaired.

    • Art C. March 17, 2017, 3:51 pm

      Gary,
      Definitely have it changed. If you live near a Remington authorized dealer, you can take it directly to the shop without mailing it back to Remington. I took my 700 to Williams Gunsight in Davison Michigan. They removed the old trigger assembly and replaced it with the new design. I hear that Remington takes 14-15 weeks to send your gun back, Williams Gunsight had my gun back to me in 15 MINUTES! My new trigger is much better, and to use a cliché “breaks like glass”. Truly a win-win situation for the consumer. I have NO CONNECTION to Remington, but would encourage all owners of effected rifles to take advantage of this totally free offer.

    • Rich March 17, 2017, 10:49 pm

      That is the problem – it is a rare but definitely proven occurrence. No one believes it can happen until it happens to them. I have a .308 Win BDL Varmint Special that I got handed down from my Dad. We shot thousands of rounds through it over several years when I was Jr High and High School age with no problem. Then, I was at the range one day a few years ago and the range officer called for everyone to engage their safety and step away from their guns and when I did so, lo and behold it fired with nothing near the trigger. This is the only occurrence I have personally been involved with, but I do have a friend who had a similar but not identical experience. I have replied on several sites where naysayers have said it must be because someone either messed with the trigger or had their finger on the trigger without knowing it. I assure you that was not the case. That being said, if you think I am going to send my rifle off to Remington, let them install an X Mark, and wait who knows how long to get it fixed, and risk it getting lost or damaged, well, it ain’t happening. And that is why the claim rate is so low. I haven’t shot mine in several years, but before I do again, I will just buy a Timney for $130 and install it myself. Won’t have to risk anything that way.

      • Joe Mchugh March 18, 2017, 3:08 pm

        Rich, I agree! Pay the money and get a Timney trigger unit. I have read reports that the “new” X – Mark Pro trigger mechanism has other problems, not related to the “trigger connector” fiasco.

        Now for even more bad news. The new production plant in Huntsville, Alabama was built to provide ALL of the current and future firearms production capacity needed. Several of the lines, such as certain pistol and rifle models have already been moved to the Huntsville plant.

        I hate to say this because the people, who work down the road from Syracuse, NY at the Ilion, New York factory, are good workers. Nevertheless, the state of New York has created too many roadblocks and hurdles for gun manufacture in our state. Taxes, labor laws and the recently passed New York S.A.F.E. act all spell the doom of continuing operations in New York.

        The Huntsville facility is state of the art in firearms production. The state tax burden is much lower, and the labor laws are
        reasonable. The only mystery is why ANY manufacturing company continues to operate in New York State. This is a sad story for the old Remington plant in Ilion, a plant that has made good firearms since 1816.

  • CS March 17, 2017, 1:47 pm

    Remington is loosing business due to poor quality control and corporate mismanagement. Anyone else onboard for boycotting all \”Freedom Group\” products? These clowns have done more damage to the American firearms industry than any politician.

  • mpeterson March 17, 2017, 11:21 am

    I’ve owned two M700s, both late ’60s, early ’70s vintage, and each fired off once while moving the safety off in the field. Fortunately neither incident resulted in injury, just shaken nerves and lingering anxiety about the safety’s reliability. Both had amazingly light and crisp triggers but were bought second-hand, so I can’t say if there was a factory problem – design, QC, trigger tuning – or a problem with user-adjustment of the trigger. On both rifles the discharge resulted in adjustment of the trigger to greater sear engagement. I sold one but have continued to use the other as my primary deer rifle with no issues since. I hate the heavy pull now, but at least I no longer expect the gun to discharge unintentionally.

    How are the new X-Mark Pro triggers? Wondering if I should opt for the replacement. Does anyone know what is meant by the “other connectorless trigger” retrofit option?

  • walter morris March 17, 2017, 11:17 am

    i have had a remington 721 since 1956 and have bought a number of others and never had any issue with any of them. there is good reason why remington has a reputation of building the best. it is a shame that they were forced to build rifles with the lawyers trigger (X mark pro trigger). now when i buy another remington i have to buy an after market trigger because that new trigger is too stiff and is not properly adjustable. since the freedom group-read george soros-has taken over remington the quality of their products has suffered. i would still buy remington products but not the newer generation guns.with the new morals of the american public i expect there were a lot of fabricated stories concerning remington rifles.

  • bill jackman March 17, 2017, 10:54 am

    Sorry to hear about the layoffs but we couldn’t have a super firearms salesman in the White House forever.

  • Big Dan "JT" Daniels March 17, 2017, 10:49 am

    Jerry Interesting article………………………………I’ve had two needing trigger replacements???? JT

  • MJB March 17, 2017, 10:18 am

    The good news is your 2nd Amendment rights will be safe for a while until the next vote buying socialist is elected. Remington just closed a practically brand new plant in Mayfield, Ky. recently and consolidated it with their facility in Al. When they start making quality guns again their sales might increase. I have never seen so many recalls from a gun manufacturer before.

  • Roy March 17, 2017, 10:13 am

    I replaced the trigger in my Mod 600 .222 (re-chambered to 223) with a Timney trigger years ago. Rifle Required slight mod of the stock to get the trigger assy to drop in. Great little varmint and AZ WT deer rifle. Very accurate Rifle must be 40 years old. .

  • Jeffrey Frischkorn March 17, 2017, 8:33 am

    Sorry, but the problem with Remington 700 triggers is hardly fake news or a fabrication or overblown… And no matter what percentage one wants to claim, 22,000 rifles is still a bunch… Actually I also had a Model 700 (in 7mm Remington Magnum) that could – intermittently discharge its fire-control system… I would remove the bolt to clean the rifle from its rear end… When I would start to close the bolt it as often as not it would fire without me so much as touching the trigger once that component finished being inserted… Now, Remington was more than good about it.. I was sent a box to ship the rifle back, given the necessary paperwork.. In short order the repaired rifle was returned and I never had a problem afterward and I was never a party to any lawsuit.. My other Model 700 – a rifle in .222 Remington – never experienced the issue… While I applaud Remington for its positive steps I must also say that, yes, there was a faulty trigger mechanism.. As gun owners we can’t be willing to let something slide that we know exists simply because it might make the Second Amendment look bad…

    • Vanns40 March 17, 2017, 9:33 am

      Don\’t conflate issues. This has nothing to do with the Second Amendment. A mechanical failure or poor design cannot make an inherent right \”look bad\”, nor can anything else.

      • loupgarous March 17, 2017, 2:23 pm

        That would be the rational way to see it. However, Jeffrey Frischkorn is right that one isolated, infrequent safety issue can indeed be conflated by a advocacy press into an argument for gun control. Jeffrey Frischkorn didn’t invent that, it’s how CBS’s “60 Minutes” plays their little games – they proceed from a couple of rifles needing trigger jobs to an argument for strict national gun control.

        He’s also right that Remington took a while to concede to all their customers that there may have been an issue with their 700 series rifles. This was the fault that was magnified into an misleading “60 MInutes” documentary, which might have been more even-handed if Sharyn Attkisson had still been there instead of being run off for not backing down from an Obama White House that didn’t tolerate critical press coverage.

    • VA mtn MAN March 17, 2017, 10:10 am

      I had a 700 bdl. in 25.06. While attempting to empty the chamber at the end of the day, the safety (on) would not allow me to cycle the bolt. I returned to bolt to fully locked and upon releasing the safety, the gun discharged, my finger nowhere near the trigger. The incident still stands my neck hair up to this day 30 years later.

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