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Ohio Consumers Appeal Whirlpool's Moldy Washer Victory

See out earlier article, Defense Verdict in First Whirlpool Mold Litigation Case.

Consumers in a class action are appealing Whirlpool's favorable verdict in the four-year moldy washer litigation to the Sixth Circuit US Court of Appeals.

In October 2014, an Ohio federal jury rejected plaintiffs' claims charging Whirlpool's washing machines were negligently designed and accumulated mold.

The Ohio class action members had purchased 20 Whirlpool Duet, Duet Sport, and Duet HT brand front loading washing machines manufactured between 2001 and 2008.

Error by the district court?

Attorney Jonathan Selbin told Law360 that the main issue on appeal is whether the district court erred in requring the jury had to make specific findings as to individual models, even though the court found the washing machines shared the same alleged defects.

Previously, plaintiffs had presented evidence to show that mechanical and design changes made by Whirlpool did not solve the mold issue.

During the trial Whirlpool argued that of the 20 different Duet models sold, all had significantly different features, and the two models purchased by the Ohio class representatives were not defective and thus couldn't help decide whether the other 18 models were defective, according to Forbes.

The federal jury found the Ohio plaintiffs did not establish by a preponderance of the evidence the machines purchased in Ohio were defectively designed. The appeal is pending briefs by both parties.

The case is In re: Whirlpool Corp. Front-Loading Washer Products Liability Litigation, case number 14-4184, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

The plaintiffs are represented by Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP.

The defendants are represented by Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP.

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