Apple faces lawsuit over AppleCare refurbished devices not being new

AppleCare+ customers have filed a class-action lawsuit in California over refurbished Apple gear.

Apple has new legal drama to take care of—this time, over refurbished devices for AppleCare+ customers.

On Wednesday, Apple was hit with a class-action lawsuit from AppleCare+ customers who claimed that their refurbished devices were not so top notch. Under the AppleCare program, if Apple can’t fix a broken device, the company is contractually obligated to replace it with a device that is “equivalent to new in performance and reliability.”

Customers and lawyers have taken issue with Apple replacing damaged devices with refurbished devices because there’s no way a used device is as good as a new one, according to the lawsuit. This all stemmed from one AppleCare+ customer whose replacement third-generation iPad had a cracked screen after six months. The plaintiff claims that she was not made aware at the time that the AppleCare+ replacement policy meant she would receive a refurbished device in case of unfixable damage.

AppleCare+ is an extension of AppleCare. The AppleCare+ warranty costs $99 and it covers up to two instances of damage for up to two years after the device was initially purchased, even “accidental damage due to handling.” There are additional fees associated with AppleCare, ranging upwards of $100 to fix or repair a current-generation iPhone, according to AppleInsider.

It’s now up to the California courts to determine if refurbished devices can be considered “equivalent” to new and viable replacement options for AppleCare. The lawsuit is seeking monetary restitution, an injunction to prevent Apple from replacing damaged devices with refurbished ones, as well as a permanent change to AppleCare terms and conditions.

The impact on you: Before you purchase an AppleCare plan, you should probably familiarize yourself with the policies. Too complicated? Thankfully you have our AppleCare guide to help you decide whether it’s even worth it or how to go about getting a prorated refund. Who knows? It might help you avoid having to hire a lawyer.

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Oscar Raymundo

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