Electronic book customers in Indiana will begin receiving refunds this week as a result of a settlement reached between five major U.S. publishers and 33 state attorneys general.
About 370,000 Indiana e-book buyers will receive more than $2.6 million in refunds, with refund amounts ranging from about $0.73 to $3.17 per book. Throughout the country, 23 million customers will receive more than $166 million as a result of the settlements.
In 2012, the U.S. Department of Justice and 33 states filed lawsuits against Apple Inc., Hachette Book Group Inc., HarperCollins Publishers L.L.C., Penguin Group (USA) Inc., Simon & Schuster Inc., and Holtzbrinck Publishers LLC d/b/a Macmillan over allegations the companies conspired to artificially raise the retail prices of e-books. In July of 2013, Apple Inc. was found to have violated antitrust laws, and the company is currently appealing the decision. The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York approved the settlements with the publishers in December 2013.
The refunds will be applied either as an account credit or made out in the form of a check and will be based on the number of eligible e-books a consumer bought between April 1, 2010, and May 21, 2012.
More information on the settlements is available at www.ebooksagsettlements.com.