BlackBerry outage leads to class action lawsuit against RIM

Poor old Research In Motion, things just seem to be going from worse to worse for the Canadian smartphone company, as not only have BlackBerry users been jumping ship due to the recent outage and the launch of the iPhone 4S, RIM now faces class action lawsuits from both Canadian and US customers.

According to a report on Reuters, consumers in Canada and the US have now sued RIM over the recent BlackBerry outage that covered the world leaving millions of BlackBerry users without service across 5 continents.

I’m sure you are aware that RIM’s Mike Lazardis formally went on record apologising for the outage problem by way of a video, which we posted (here) after which Reasearch In Motion came forward with a compensation offer for those that suffered from the four-day outage, offering free premium apps to the turn of $100.

However, obviously that rather pitiful compensation offer wasn’t enough and the US lawsuit was filed on Wednesday in the Santa Ana, California federal court on behalf of all US BlackBerry owners, while the Canadian lawsuit was filed the same day in the Quebec Superior Court and was filed on behalf of all Canadian BlackBerry users with an “active service agreement” at the time of said outage.

The US lawsuit was brought by Eric Mitchell, a resident of Sherman Oaks, California with the complaint claiming that although Mitchell didn’t sign a contract with RIM directly, he “paid the company fees for BlackBerry device through a mobile carrier Sprint.” Thus the complaint said Mitchell had an “implied contract” with RIM.

United States plaintiffs are seeking damages including attorney fees, legal expenses and compensation in cash, and the lawsuit said, “The size of the potential class of U.S. consumers would include 2.4 million California residents alone.”

Obviously Research In Motion have not yet commented on the lawsuit, but if the lawsuits come down in favour of the plaintiffs, it could cost the BlackBerry maker quite a substantial wad of cash don’t you think?

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