In November 2021, the owner of a Moto G9 Play suffered burns after the cell phone caught fire in his pants pocket. The incident became a legal matter after the Motorola refuses to replace the device on the grounds that it was misused. The process has moved forward. Motorola and Via must pay compensation whose value exceeds R$ 12,000.
O Moto G9 Play it was acquired from Casas Bahia, hence Via’s involvement in the process. The cell phone, a unit with 64 GB of storage, was purchased on November 28, 2020 for BRL 1,189.02.
According to the owner, overheating caused the device to catch fire on November 4, 2021, when it was still under warranty. At the time, the cell phone was stored in his pants, which is why he, in the process, had second-degree burns on his right thigh.
Still in the process, the owner of the Moto G9 Play states that it sent it to Motorola technical support for a replacement or refund of the purchase price. However, the company used the argument of misuse to deny the request.
The impasse ended up at the 3rd Civil Court of the São Paulo Court of Justice (TJSP). In addition to the refund of the amount paid for the cell phone, the owner of the device asked for compensation of R$ 10,000 for moral damages.
Motorola maintains misuse argument
Motorola contested the action on the grounds that the cell phone was manufactured within technical safety standards. The company also claims that, according to a technical report prepared by qualified professionals, the explosion “occurred due to the misuse of the device by the author, resulting from high mechanical effort, caused by pressure or impact”.
Via already argued that the device was sold to the author of the process in perfect conditions of use. The company also stated that, based on the expert report, “the explosion of the device occurred due to the negligence of the user”.
However, Judge Paulo Luis Aparecido Treviso declared that the report was made unilaterally by Motorola, which is why it cannot be fully taken into account:
Despite the technical quality of the report presented by the defendant Motorola, this document does not have the necessary impartiality for its use in this procedure, since the report was produced unilaterally, without the participation of the applicant and by professionals who provide services to the defendant, hence that there is a risk that the report only reproduces the interests of the person who hired the professionals.
In the same demonstration, Judge Treviso explained that the report presented by the author of the process was formulated by an independent professional. The document could have been contested by the defendants, but they did not.
Motorola and Via resort
The magistrate ordered Motorola and Via to pay the plaintiff R$ 1,189.02 referring to the value of the cell phone, R$ 10,000 for pain and suffering and 10% of the amount of the conviction to cover costs and fees. The sum of these amounts exceeds R$ 12,000.
But the dispute in the courts did not come to an end. Motorola and Via have already appealed the decision.
O Technoblog asked both companies if they had any position to give on the case. Motorola sent the following note:
Motorola informs that it has appealed against the decision, since the technical report presented was not considered. The appeal is still pending judgment.
Via had not responded until the publication of this news, but the space is still open. The text will be updated if the company decides about it.