The Joseph Saveri Law Firm has filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of U.S. consumers against HP Inc. in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.
The suit charges HP with designing and implementing a malicious firmware update to disable printers using competitors’ ink cartridges on affected computers to gain an advantage in the market. The update created an error message that falsely claimed the third-party cartridges were damaged or missing, and should be replaced.
Customers blame HP for the loss of time, money, and energy spent troubleshooting and replacing equipment that was perfectly functional. HP has said that it may introduce similar updates in the future to disable cartridges made by HP’s competitors.
“HP’s practices have harmed many people by causing undue stress and financial loss, while limiting their purchasing options,” says Kyla Gibboney, antitrust counsel on the case. “HP acted intentionally and illegally to exploit its own customers in order to extract greater profits from the ink cartridge market.”
The suit, In re. HP Printer Firmware Update Litig., No. 5:16-cv-05820-EJD-SVK, seeks damages, restitution, injunctive, and other relief for HP printer owners affected by the update.