PS5 DualSense Controller Drift: class action lawsuit filed against Sony

PS5 DualSense Controller Drift: class action lawsuit filed against Sony
A US law firm has filed a class-action lawsuit against Sony, alleging that the PS5 DualSense controller is defective due to drift, and that Sony was aware of the problem without disclosing it. The lawsuit describes Sony’s behavior as “fraudulent, deceptive, illegal and unfair.” Last week, we reported an investigation of DualSense by law firm Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith LLP (CSK&D). The company has now formally filed a class action lawsuit in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York. In documents submitted to IGN, the lawsuit was filed on behalf of plaintiff Lmarc Turner and “all other persons in the same position”, naming the defendants as Sony Corporation of America and Sony Interactive Entertainment. As far as IGN knows, this is the first case against Sony for DualSense – it may not be the last.

The complaint describes the PS5 DualSense controller as “defective,” as it contains “a defect that results in character movement or gameplay on the screen without the user’s command or manual operation of the joystick,” known as the controller gimbal. Furthermore, the complaint alleges that Sony was “at all relevant times” aware of the drift problems, “through consumer complaints online, complaints submitted by consumers directly to it, and through its own pre-test.”

The lawsuit also alleges that Sony’s options for repairing the console are very limited: “When consumers encounter a drift defect, repair options are minimal. Reportedly, the Sony PlayStation portal dedicated to PS5 hardware problems – including the DualSense Controller – faces a backlog and is redirecting consumers to contact a service agent Customers via PlayStation Support contact page. Customers face long wait times and have to deal with a maze of pre-recorded phone messages before finally speaking with an agent about DualSense Controller repairs. “

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The lawsuit seeks a jury trial, “monetary compensation for damages suffered, a clarification exemption, and general judicial compensation.” The documents cite charges for breach of warranty oversight, breach of implied warranty of marketing, illicit enrichment, and violations of Virginia Consumer Protection Act.

Virginia-based plaintiff Lmarc Turner reportedly purchased the PS5 on or around February 5, 2021 and found he had a drift that same day. Turner apparently contacted Sony customer service and was asked to reset the game and console, but he offered no further assistance. It didn’t solve the problem, then Turner bought a DualSense second. “Had the plaintiff been aware of a drift defect before purchasing his PS5,” the documents add, “he wouldn’t have bought a PS5 otherwise, or he would have paid much less for it.”

An interesting additional detail: Turner acknowledges his agreement to Sony’s terms and conditions when setting up the PS5, but reportedly sent a letter to Sony expressing his intention to unsubscribe from “any disputes with Sony through individual arbitration”. A separate CSK&D lawsuit against Nintendo in connection with console deviation was recently forced into arbitration before reaching the courts. This step may not be possible in this case, which increases the likelihood that you will get to the trial before the requested jury.Aside from the Turner report, the documents show a number of examples of social media comments regarding PS5 skew, where players complain of drifting out of the box, or within days of use. CSK & D points to reports of drifts on the PS4’s Dualshock 4 controllers as well – since the sticks inside both console models are the same, CSK&D adds that to its evidence of Sony’s previous knowledge of the problem.

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The lawsuit says there is “no indication” Sony has developed a drift repair for DualSense: “Instead, it appears that it is simply performing some kind of a minor overhaul and sending the DualSense controller back to consumers who remain defective and prone to exhibiting the drift defect in the future “.

The lawsuit calls for mitigation in the form of an order to stop Sony’s “illegal, deceptive, fraudulent and unfair business practices”, set up a free recall or exchange program for DualSense controllers, compensation, and more.

IGN contacted Sony to comment on the lawsuit.

Drift has become an increasingly hot topic in recent years. We previously described the drift in Nintendo Switch Joy-Con consoles as a “disaster” for the company, and Nintendo is now facing official scrutiny and lawsuits worldwide, including an investigation by the European Commission.

Joe Scribbles is IGN’s Executive News Editor. follow him Twitter. Do you tip for us? Want to discuss a potential story? Please send an email to

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