Lawsuit Claims Hatchimals Maker Pulled Bait-and-Switch Scheme
Jan 26, 2017 10:05 AM EST
Spin Master, the makers of Hatchimals, are embroiled in a class action lawsuit after the hottest toy during last holiday season left some parents and kids into frustration. The concept of the toy, which is shaped like an egg, is it hatches when children knock, tap, or rub on the shell after about 3o minutes of playtime. But parents are complaining that the product doesn't hatch putting their hard-earned money into waste.
The lawsuit seeks to give justice for the "hundreds of thousands" of people who purchased malfunctioning Hatchimals since the toy was released in October. The facts of the case show that Jodie Hedjuk of Bakersfield, California, purchased a Hatchimal for her daughter's birthday in January. Her daughter followed the instructions included in the package for it to hatch. Apparently, that didn't work out and the toy remained inside its egg. In addition, the class action lawsuit seeks refunds for those who bought the defective toys.
It must be noted that the Hatchimals cost about $50, depending on the retailer. Some would sell it for $250. A customer on amazon complained that she paid triple the price for her daughter to get one only to find that the Hatchimal would not respond inside the egg. The lawsuit claims that the company knew that the "hatching" was one of the primary draws of the toy. Further, it alleged that the company pulled a bait-and-switch marketing scheme.
According to the Federal Trade Commission guidelines, a bait is a deliberation intention to deceive the customer into buying the initial offer while having no intention to sell them in the first place. Then the switch happens when the retailer uses the bait to lure the customer into either buying a more expensive item or to pay more for the originally advertised product than was initially listed. Contrary to what the lawsuit claims, it seems like customers simply received a defective product, the Consumerist noted.
A spokesperson for Spin Master said that with toys that incorporate a high level of technology there are cases where the product may not perform as well as expected. Furthermore, the Hatchimals maker claimed that it took proactive steps to respond to queries and is committed to doing anything further to resolve the issues brought in the lawsuit.