Remington firearms dating
The apparent fear: changing the design would be seen as an admission of guilt.
The documents, obtained exclusively by CNBC, come to light as the company and plaintiffs' attorneys seek final court approval of a landmark class-action settlement in which Remington has agreed to replace the triggers in as many as 7.5 million guns. District Judge Ortrie Smith cited a "quite low" initial response to the settlement offer.
The proposed settlement stems from the case of a Missouri man, Ian Pollard, who claimed his Remington 700 rifle fired without the trigger being pulled on three separate occasions.
But consumer advocates and public interest groups say companies routinely use the agreements to hide risks from the public.
The replacement mechanism does away with the connector.
The settlement covers some of Remington's top-selling models including the 700, Seven, Sportsman 78, 673, 710, 715, 770, 600, 660, XP-100, 721, 722, and 725, produced since 1948.
Public Justice managed to secure the release of the Remington documents as part of a longstanding push to eliminate what it calls "excessive secrecy" in the courts.
Public Justice saw an opening in Remington's case after Smith — in a rare move — signaled that he would not allow the usual degree of secrecy in the proposed class-action settlement."The Court cannot conceive that an owner of an allegedly defective firearm would not seek the remedy being provided," Smith wrote.