Lowe's to pay $1.6 million in settlement for mislabeled building materials

Company must also pay $1.47 million in civil penalties, costs of investigation

Lowe's Home Centers was ordered to pay a $1.6 million settlement in a California consumer protection action for allegations that it was

selling building materials advertised with the wrong dimensions, the Marin County District Attorney's Office said Wednesday.

The action was brought by district attorney's offices in Marin, Los Angeles, Monterey, San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties.

They alleged that Lowe's Home Centers, LLC, sold structural dimension building products that described product dimensions that were not the actual dimensions -- incorrectly advertising the length, width, depth or thickness of building materials.

In some cases, the inaccurate labeling was because of inaccurate dimensions provided by the manufacturers or other suppliers, according to Marin County prosecutors.

Lowe's must remove the products from sale or correct the false, misleading, deceptive or inaccurate product descriptions. The company must also pay $1.47 million in civil penalties and the costs of the investigation, prosecutors said.

The company will also pay another $150,000 for future consumer protection investigations.

Marin prosecutors said that Lowe's was cooperative with the investigation and has already implemented better policies and procedures to keep misleading or inaccurate product descriptions out of its advertisements.

"Consumers should expect when making product purchases that retailers are providing accurate information especially when misinformation could adversely affect building products that more often than not rely on precise measurements," Marin County District Attorney Ed Berberian said in a


Scott Morris, Bay City News

— Bay City News Service

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Like this comment
Posted by mooseturd
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Aug 28, 2014 at 9:58 am

mooseturd is a registered user.

So, they called a 2x4 a 2x4. It's actually a 1.468 x 3.444.

Like this comment
Posted by Lib-tards strike again
a resident of Birdland
on Aug 28, 2014 at 10:14 am

This is yet another classic case of government overreach. If Lowe's wants to lie about its products, we have a first amendment that protects its right to do so. Consumers are free to shop elsewhere. That's the beauty of capitalism. The problem is overpaid government meddlers that make businesses raise their prices. Same with food products. If companies want to lie about how much rat poop is in their food products, well, so be it. Eventually consumers find this out, and then they can decide if they want to continue purchasing the product. I personally have many friends who think rat poop enhances the flavor of most food products.

Like this comment
Posted by EqualityWorks
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 28, 2014 at 12:09 pm

Why wasn't Home Depot included in this? Their products have the same dimensions as Lowe's. I thought it was just an accepted quirk of the building industry.

Like this comment
Posted by fix the mislabeling
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 28, 2014 at 12:53 pm

When I buy boxes of tile labeled 12 inches X 24 inches, I expect the tiles to be 12 inches X 24 inches, not 11 1/2 inches X 23 1/2 inches or 11 3/4 inches X 23 3/4 inches.

I'm glad the problem will be fixed.

1 person likes this
Posted by Designer
a resident of another community
on Sep 10, 2014 at 6:24 pm

It is COMMON knowledge in the construction, building and design industry that a 2x4 in the "nominal" size and it's ACTUAL dimension is 1 1/2" x 3 1/2"... This is published, accepted, and known as an industry standard... If I ever bought a 2x4 that really was 2" x 4" I would have to return it as defective! Each industry has standards that are known, and even in most DIY videos and lessons it is explained to the lay person.

What is next.. Is someone going to sue the Treasury department because they don't understand inflation and the dollar they just received from the bank is not buying the same as what did last week???

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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