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Class Action Lawsuit Settles for $1.5M -HP Ink Cartridge Monopoly

Class Action Lawsuit Settles for $1.5M -HP Ink Cartridge Monopoly

Customers reached a $1.5 million deal with HP ending a class action lawsuit over third party ink cartridges and an allegedly fake error message that would stop consumers from being able to use them.
The HP ink cartridge monopoly class action settlement, if approved, will end claims that the printer company installed firmware, called “dynamic security,” into HP printers that stopped customers from being able to use non-HP ink cartridges.

The class action lawsuit alleged that the use of firmware to force consumers to only use HP ink was illegal. Further, alleged that plaintiffs, the HP firmware allegedly caused the printers to display error messages when non-HP cartridges were installed, making customers think that the cartridges were defective.

Earlier this year, HP asked a federal judge to dismiss the class action lawsuit; however, U.S. District Judge Edward Davila tossed HP’s argument, though some claims were trimmed from the case.

Under the terms of the HP ink cartridge monopoly class action settlement, HP is barred from using the so-called dynamic security program on affected printers. Additionally, Class Members will be able to make a claim for a cash payout from the settlement fund.

“First, the settlement achieves the goal of the litigation by eliminating the threat of forcible printer disablement for all members of the class,” state the plaintiffs’ in the motion for preliminary approval of the settlement agreement.

“Second, just as they would have been able to come forward to claim individual damages had they prevailed on common liability issues at trial, the settlement allows class members who lost money or time because of HP’s printer disablements to make a claim for full recovery of their losses.”

The number of Class Members is estimated to be about 50,000, according to the HP ink cartridge monopoly class action settlement.

“The settlement avoids protracted litigation while delivering all or most of the relief class members could expect to obtain at trial,” notes the plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary approval of the HP ink cartridge monopoly class action settlement.

Class Members will receive a part of a $1.5 million settlement fund under the terms of the HP ink cartridge monopoly class action settlement.

“On the optimistic assumption that 20 percent of these class members make a claim, the average payment per class member would be $150. Had plaintiffs prevailed at trial on the common liability issues, under plaintiffs’ trial plan, individual class members would have been able to submit proof to recover their out-­of­-pocket expenses in proceedings following the class trial,” notes the motion for preliminary approval of the HP ink cartridge monopoly class action settlement.

“While such individual expenses vary, a full set of HP replacement cartridges costs about $100 and a replacement HP printer costs about $150.”

The plaintiffs are represented by Daniel C. Girard, Jordan Elias and Elizabeth Kramer of Girard Gibbs LLP, Todd M. Friedman and Adrian R. Bacon of the Law Offices of Todd M. Friedman PC, Joseph R. Saveri, Nicomedes S. Herrera and Kyla J. Gibboney of Joseph Saveri Law Firm Inc., Daniel R. Karon of Karon LLC, and Taylor Bartlett of Heninger Garrison Davis LLC.

The HP Ink Cartridge Monopoly Class Action Lawsuit is In re: HP Printer Firmware Update Litigation, Case No. 5:16-cv-05820-EJD, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division.