Posted by - Hearing Aids.

ReSound, one of the big six hearing aid manufacturers, issued a statement to its distribution network promising to void all hearing aid warranties associated with the online direct-to-consumer hearing aid retailer BuyHear.com.

BuyHear.com Hearing Aid Warranties

Statement from ReSound

You may have recently heard about, or been impacted by, the activities of buyhear.com, a group that sells hearing instruments directly to consumers despite being unauthorized to do so by ReSound.

ReSound believes that individuals suffering from hearing loss should seek assistance from an authorized, licensed hearing care professional to ensure they receive the best quality of care. Because buyhear.com continues to sell hearing instruments without being authorized to do so, ReSound will not honor or service any warranty associated with a hearing instrument purchased through buyhear.com. For more detailed information on our internet sales policy, please visit resound.com/internet-sales-policy.

After reading the statement, we immediately checked BuyHear’s website to see if they are still promoting product warranties for ReSound hearing aids, and sure enough, they are promising a three year product warranty:

BuyHear.com warranty

Recommendation for Consumers

At Hearing Tracker, we believe in the gold standard of audiological service when it comes to hearing aid fittings, and generally do not advise consumers to purchase from direct-to-consumer businesses. However, if you are planning to purchase online, please do your due diligence first and contact the relevant hearing aid manufacturer first to confirm that you aren’t buying a product with no warranty!

Lastly, know your rights! If you have already purchased hearing aids from an online retailer, and have been refused warranty support from a hearing aid manufacturer, you are within your rights to demand that the online retailer honor the warranty themselves, and that means they should be responsible for covering the cost of repairs / replacements that would normally be covered by the promised manufacturer warranty. Best of luck, and please be careful!

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  • Christopher Scot Frink

    Kudos to ReSound for this approach. If the seller is not an authorized distributor of their product and is obtaining the products through nefarious means (i.e purchasing through a proxy account), then they are completely within their rights to refuse warranty service on the product. If it is ReSound’s policy that their product be fit in person by a licensed professional in the consumer’s home town, then that is the standard that should be respected. If a consumer has an issue with this, they should beware the purchase of online sales since this is generally the preferred method of all manufacturers. ReSound is just taking a stronger stance on it than the others. Let’s hope the rest follow suit.

    • Marc Blank

      Punishing customers for THEIR failure to police their distribution channels is wrongheaded beyond belief. Resound is only hurting themselves with this kind of attitude and approach (not to mention that I’d be shocked if they EVER refused a warranty repair in this kind of circumstance). And no, I doubt any of the others will follow suit – it’s hard to believe any of them are that stupid.

      • Christopher Scot Frink

        I agree that punishing the consumer is unfortunate, but if it is company policy that the product is to be fit by a licensed professional in-person, then that’s their policy. I have checked with three other manufacturers, and they have similar policies, although they haven’t been so bold as to put out a statement like ReSound just did.

        I would advise ReSound to post this on their regular consumer website, front-and-center, so that consumers doing their research will know not to go to online retailers for ReSound products unless they want product-only and no warranty.

        • Marc Blank

          All this will accomplish is to hurt Resound with their potential customers. Who on earth would buy an expensive product from a company that picks and chooses who can get their product repaired under warranty. BTW, the headline of your post is factually incorrect and potentially libelous (i.e. nobody has been refused warranty repair). You and Resound both sound like losers to me; sorry.

          • Marc, for clarity we have updated the post title to “Buyer Beware: BuyHear.com Hearing Aid Warranties May Not Be Honored” … We want to be absolutely clear in our headline and appreciate your feedback. Out of curiousity, how do you know that no warranties have been refused?

  • Dan Schwartz

    Oops! After watching a passenger getting dragged off an airplane in violation of the fine print in UAL’s contract for carriage, corporations must be extremely careful when making determinations of this type. At minimum, this may run afoul of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1975, as well as the FTC regulations promulgated by this enabling legislation.

    What’s more, with the combination of the 5th Circuit decision in WalMart negating mandatory state dispensing licensure, and the FDA’s push for OTC hearing aids, I see boatloads of both legal and bad PR trouble for GN ReSound.

    Circling back to the United fiasco and without doing a deep dive into the aviation particular, they could have sent their four employees to crew the flight the next morning via Air Taxi service, for roughly $6,000 total (I priced it out). Instead, they chose to involve Chicago Aviation Authority security (the security goons were not even supposed to have anything identifying them as having “Police” anywhere after January 1st); and instead of eating the six grand, instead their market cap has dropped $900 million as of market close tonight.