Canon Hit with Class-Action Suit Claiming PIXMA Print-Head Defect

Canon PIXMA MX860

Law360 reports that Canon U.S.A. Inc. was hit with a class-action lawsuit in June, claiming that several of its PIXMA inkjet printers have a defect with their inkjet print heads that makes the printers inoperable after their warranty runs out.

The complaint was filed in New York federal court on Jun 27th by Texas resident Marcus Ho, who alleges that Canon has long known about the defect but refused to issue a recall, and also refused to pay for repairs beyond the printers’ one-year warranty.

Robertson says that he purchased a Canon PIXMA MX860 Printer for personal use from an online retailer in March 2010. He alleges that in his experience and in general, “after limited use,” certain models of Canon’s printers display an error message, “U052 Wrong Printhead Error,” which “disables all Printer functions, including scanning and facsimile…render[ing] the Printers unsuitable for their principal and intended purpose.”

Canon product support has defined the error message U052 as “an indication that the Printer does not recognize the printhead or the printhead itself is faulty.”

The lawsuit also states that Canon states “if the issue cannot be successfully resolved by trouble-shooting, which it could not in the case of Plaintiff Robertson, the Printer must be returned to Canon for service.” Robertson says in his lawsuit that such repair is usually more expensive than purchasing a new printer..

The Canon class-action lawsuit argues that Canon knew about the problem because it performed repairs on the faulty printers during the warranty period and failed to recall or extend the warranty for “what it knew to be a defective product.”

Robertson also alleges in the lawsuit that the other Canon printers that are defective, including the Canon PIXMA MX892, MP600, MX860, MX700, MX712, MX960 and MP970.

Robertson also alleges that Canon concealed the defect from consumers.

“The Printers were not altered by Plaintiff, the members of the Class, Canon’s distributors or other personnel,” he claims in the lawsuit. “The Printers were defective when they left the exclusive control of Canon and Canon knew the printers would be used without additional tests for defects.”

Robertson claims that “by engaging in the above described conduct, Canon committed acts and omissions with actual malice and accompanies by a wanton and willful disregard of persons…who foreseeably might be harmed by those acts and omissions.”

Robertson claims Canon breached their express warranties that the printers would operate properly and without defects, as well as breached the implied warranty of merchantability because the printers were not of average quality and were unfit for their intended use. He also alleges that Canon violated the Magnuson-Moss Act, and claims that Canon was unjustly enriched when it allegedly concealed the alleged defects. He argues that Canon should pay restitution, compensatory and punitive damages, as well as attorney fees and costs. He also asks that Canon be stopped from selling the printers and be required to inform the public about the alleged defect.

The purported class includes “all purchasers in the United States of America of the Printers” and “the Class is composed of no fewer than tens of thousands of persons nation-wide.”

The lawsuit is Robertson v. Canon U.S.A., Inc., Case No. 1:14-cv-00607-SS in the U.S. District in the Western District of Texas.

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