A class-action lawsuit was filed by plaintiff Julie Corzine against Whirlpool and Maytag in November 2015 claiming some of the refrigerator models were defective. They had an ice buildup ultimately causing water leakage from the appliances. The refrigerators covered in this settlement were sold as a part of Amana, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, and Jenn-Air brands. Under the settlement terms, class members are eligible for a compensation of $150 and the final amount will depend on when the repairs were made.
Eligibility For Making Claim: Consumers who received certain Whirlpool-manufactured “French-door, bottom-mount” refrigerators as a gift, acquired them under home remodel or purchase or separately purchased these electronic appliances are eligible to make a claim. You can access the full list of all the qualified models from the settlement website wherein all the models are segregated into Group A and Group B. This segregation is an important factor to consider for future freezing events.
Proof Of Purchase: All documents supporting associated costs and repairs.
Potential Claim Amount: Maximum of $150 determined by the following reimbursement rules:
- Complete reimbursement for parts and labor costs for eligible repairs incurred within 1-3 years post-purchase.
- Complete reimbursement for parts and 65% of labor costs for eligible repairs incurred in the 4th year post-purchase.
- Complete reimbursement for parts and 50% of labor costs for eligible repairs incurred in the 5th year post-purchase.
Case Summary: Plaintiff Julie Corzine alleged that Whirlpool refrigerators are carelessly designed and do not operate properly. As per her claim, the refrigerator tube drains become clogged and fail to properly drain evaporated water leading to an ice buildup and water leakage from the bottom. Corzine blamed this tube-drain defect to cause her and other potential class members to face various costs in replacing the defective parts. The class-action lawsuit was filed by Corzine on different claims like negligence, breach of an implied warranty, etc. Corzine’s attorney asserted that a refrigerator should keep the food cold and prevent ice accumulation.
Whirlpool tried dogging the suit but had to ultimately face the claims in October 2016 by a federal judge. Though some of the negligence claims were dismissed by the judge, she agreed to the plaintiff’s breach of warranty allegations against Whirlpool and Maytag filed in November 2015. Whirlpool agreed to the settlement of paying $21 million of which $1.8 million will go for meeting the fees and costs of the plaintiff’s attorneys. The lead plaintiff Julie Corzine shall receive an award of $5000 for her role in this class action lawsuit. Apart from the settlement amount, Whirlpool has also agreed to keep up with its replacement parts program till 2021 end. Customers who had participated in the program already are eligible for reduced benefits after considering the benefits received by them.
Claim Form: https://freezersettlement.com/
Deadline for Submitting Claim:
1/22/2020 – For freezing events occurring before Sept. 5, 2019.
12/31/2021 – For upcoming freezing events of eligible models in Group A.
12/31/2026 – For upcoming freezing events of eligible models in Group B.
Final Hearing Date: 11/22/2019
Settlement Pool: $21 million
Important Note: The last hearing date in the settlement case of the Whirlpool refrigerator was carried out on 22nd November 2019. The deadline for objecting to or opting out of the refrigerator settlement has already passed. The last date for customers to file a valid claim form was 22nd January 2020. However adequate proof is required for validating all repair costs. Customers have until 31st December 2021 for models enlisted in Group A and 31st December 2026 for models enlisted in Group B to contact Whirlpool in the unlikely event of future ice buildup.
Case Name: Julie Corzine v. Whirlpool Corporation, Case No. 5:15-cv-05764-BLF, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
Corzine v. Whirlpool Corp. Settlement
Attn: Settlement Administrator
1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Graham B. LippSmith
Celene Chan Andrews
Jaclyn L. Anderson
Frank A. Perez
Scott. J. Thomson
KASDAN LIPPSMITH WEBER TURNER LLP
Andrew M. Unthank
WHEELER TRIGG O’DONNELL LLP
Clement L. Glynn
Jon A. Eldredge
GLYNN & FINLEY LLP