Apple to Pay Back Tennesseans for E-Books

Tennesseans who purchased ebooks from Apple Inc. will receive their cut from a price-fixing settlement over the price of ebooks, according to the Tennessee Attorney General’s Office.

Tennesseans will see a total of $8.5 million out of a $400 million settlement. That’s in addition to nearly $2.9 million already paid to Tennesseans.

Customers who bought ebooks from Apple’s iBooks store from April 1, 2010, through May 21, 2012, will start receiving account credit or checks beginning June 21. Consumers will receive $6.93 for each best-selling New York Times book and $1.57 per all other ebook purchases.

The settlement comes from the U.S. Department of Justice filing an anti-trust lawsuit against Apple, Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, Macmillan, Penguin Group and Simon & Schuster in 2012, according to the official website for the settlement.

Tennessee joined a group of 33 states, led by Connecticut and Texas, in investigating and prosecuting Apple for its participation in the conspiracy to artificially inflate E-book prices.

All five of the conspiring publishers settled prior to trial, paying a total of approximately $166 million in nationwide consumer compensation, according to a news release. Most of that money was distributed to consumers in March 2014. The current distribution will consists of the $400 million Apple payment and any remaining funds from the publisher settlements. The $566 million total nationwide compensation to consumers is more than twice the estimated amount of actual damages.

Consumers who purchased ebooks through Sony or Google will receive checks in the mail. Consumers who purchased ebooks through Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, or Kobo will automatically receive credits in their accounts (unless they previously requested to receive checks), according to the release. Consumers receiving account credits should expect to receive an email between June 21, 2016 and June 24, 2016, indicating that the credits are available in their accounts. Credits may be used to purchase anything sold by these retailers, not only ebooks. Affected customers can visit the official lawsuit site or call toll-free (866) 686-9333 for more information.

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