March 2, 2012
Today, the federal court overseeing a nationwide product defect class action lawsuit against LG granted final approval to a settlement offering consumers, in the words of the judge, "complete reimbursement." The class of more than 600,000 consumers alleged that several LG refrigerator models had a faulty design that caused the interior lights to remain on even when the refrigerator doors were closed (identified as the "light issue"), resulting in overheating and food spoilage.
The settlement provides that LG reimburse class members for all out-of-pocket costs (parts and labor) to repair the light issue prior to the mailing of the class notice and extends the warranty with respect to the light issue for 10 years from the date of the original retail purchase of the refrigerator. The extended warranty covers in-home refrigerator repair performed by LG and, in some cases, the cost of a replacement refrigerator.
In approving the settlement, U.S. District Court Judge William J. Martini stated, "The Settlement in this case provides for both the complete reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses for repairs fixing the Light Issue, as well as a warranty for ten years from the date of refrigerator purchase. It would be hard to imagine a better recovery for the Class had the litigation gone to trial. Because Class members will essentially receive all of the relief to which they would have been entitled after a successful trial, this factor weighs heavily in favor of settlement."