Brother Laser Printer Class Action Says Consumers Cheated Out of Useable Toner

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A class action lawsuit  alleges that Brother laser printers are intentionally designed to stop printing before the toner runs out, causing consumers to pay for unnecessary cartridge replacement.

Plaintiff Zeev Friedman filed the class action lawsuit in Ohio federal court claiming that in order to maximize sales, Brother laser printers are set up to refuse to print once a laser toner cartridge has been used a certain number of times, although that cartridge in fact contains enough useable toner to print hundreds or thousands of additional pages of text.

Specifically, the complaint notes that a significant portion of Brother’s profits from the sales of laser printers are actually generated, not by the sales of the actual printers, but by the sales of laser toner cartridges.

Freidman goes on to state that Brother laser printers are specifically programmed so as to prohibit consumers from overriding the printer programming that requires the replacement of a toner cartridge with a substantial amount of toner remaining. In fact, a district judge presiding over a similar Brother laser printer toner class action lawsuit, states that with most laser printers, “consumers will print until they can tell by degraded print quality that [toner] is running out. This is because they expect full use of their [toner cartridge].”

According to Brother laser printer class action lawsuit, Freidman owns a Brother HL-5370DW laser printer and uses the recommended TN620 laser toner cartridge. In 2014, he purchased 2 of these toner cartridges for a total of $127.48. But in 2017, both his Brother laser printer and cartridges stopped printing, even though the cartridge still had toner remaining. Freidman says he was forced to replace the toner cartridge, shelling out $109.99 to do so.

“Brother laser printers are all programmed to deprive users of access to significant portion of the toner in their cartridges. But for Brother design, which denied Plaintiff access to the toner in his toner cartridges, Plaintiff could have printed more pages before replacing his toner cartridges and ultimately spent less on replacement cartridges. Defendant designs its laser printers to deny purchasers the ability to use the full capacity of their toner cartridges,” the Brother laser printer class action lawsuit contends.

Friedman is seeking to represent a proposed Class of Ohio residents and businesses who purchased a Brother laser toner cartridge. He is asking the court to award compensatory and punitive damages for Brother’s alleged illegal actions in denying consumers access to all the useable toner in their cartridges and for exercising wrongful control over purchased cartridges.

Freidman is represented by Patrick J. Perotti, Nicole T. Fiorelli, and Frank A. Bartela of Dworken & Berstein Co. LPA.

The Brother Laser Printer Class Action Lawsuit is Zeev Freidman Esq. D/B/A The Friedman Law Firm v. Brother International Corporation, in the Court of Common Pleas Cuyahoga County, Ohio. The case number was unknown at the time of publication.

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