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Sunbeam Loses $59M Lawsuit

Verdict in $59 Sunbeam Negligence Trial Upheld

July 5, 2017
A Ninth Circuit Court panel has upheld the decision of a California jury to award nearly $60 million to the family of a woman who was killed as the result of a defective Sunbeam space heater. The panel rejected the defendant’s claim that the charge of negligence was unsupported.

Amy Celeste Shindeling of Pinon Hills, California, was killed in 2011 when a Sunbeam heater malfunctioned causing an electrical fire that burned down the house where she lived with her husband and daughters.

A jury had awarded the Shindelings $59.3 million in 2015, on the grounds that Sunbeam did not adequately warn consumers of the limitations of the self-shutoff feature of its Holmes-brand space heater. The award was based on claims of negligence, and was awarded in part on the pain and suffering of the surviving family members.

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