Latest in Gear

Image credit: Pornchai Jaito / EyeEm via Getty Images

FTC makes clear 'warranty void if removed' stickers are illegal

Companies can't prevent you from getting your device fixed by a third party.
3855 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Sponsored Links

Pornchai Jaito / EyeEm via Getty Images

Those stickers on gadgets that say you'll void your warranty if they're removed? You've probably come to expect them whenever you purchase a new device. The FTC has just made clear, however, that those warranty notices are illegal when it fired off warning letters to six companies that market and sell automobiles, mobile devices and video game consoles in the US. It didn't mention which automakers and tech corporations they are, but since the list includes companies that make video game consoles, Sony and Microsoft could be two of them.

Under the 1975 Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, which the commission cited in its letter, companies can't put repair restrictions on their products unless they provide the parts or services for free or receive a waiver from the FTC. Thomas B. Pahl, Acting Director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection, said in a statement:

"Provisions that tie warranty coverage to the use of particular products or services harm both consumers who pay more for them as well as the small businesses who offer competing products and services."

Since warranty stickers are a common sight on popular consumer electronics, like say, the PS4 and various phones, it was pretty unclear whether the law covers products much cheaper than cars. As Motherboard noted, though, the letters made it crystal that it also covers electronic devices, so long as they cost more than $15.

The FTC asked the six companies to review their warranty notices and make sure that they don't "state or imply that warranty coverage is conditioned on the use of specific parts of services." It will then review the companies' websites after 30 days, warning the letters' recipients that "failure to correct any potential violations may result in law enforcement action."

Source: FTC
In this article: FTC, gadgetry, gadgets, gear, warranty
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
3855 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Popular on Engadget

The best consoles, games and accessories for students

The best consoles, games and accessories for students

View
OnePlus TV will run ‘optimized’ Android TV software

OnePlus TV will run ‘optimized’ Android TV software

View
China's latest retaliatory tariffs could pose trouble for Tesla

China's latest retaliatory tariffs could pose trouble for Tesla

View
'World's first' solar-powered rail line opens in the UK

'World's first' solar-powered rail line opens in the UK

View
'El Hijo' is a Spaghetti Western stealth game with heart

'El Hijo' is a Spaghetti Western stealth game with heart

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr