LCD price fixing leads to $1 billion glass action

Consumers who bought a TV, monitor or notebook computer with an LCD flat panel screen are being advised they can claim back money from price-fixing settlements which over the years have totalled $1.1 billion.

Kinsella Media, LLC, which is dealing with a court-approved LCD flat panel litigation from seven flat panel manufacturers including AU Optronics, LG Display and Toshiba, has said that the fees the companies have been ordered to pay back compensate users who could have been forced to pay more for their products.

It follows a lawsuit which found the manufacturers guilty of conspiring to fix, raise, maintain or stabilise prices of TFT-LCD flat panels, resulting in overcharges to consumers who bought televisions, monitors and notebook computers.

The law firm said that the settlements would provide almost $1.1 billion to consumers in 24 states, as well as the District of Columbia and government entities in eight states that purchased televisions, monitors and notebook computers containing an LCD flat panel.

The settlements also provide nationwide injunctive relief to stop the defendants’ alleged behaviour.

However, there may be some time to wait, as the court is still debating whether the charges against the companies are to be upheld. It will hold a hearing on 29 November, 2012 to consider whether to approve the three new settlements from LG, AOU and Toshiba.  

Payments will be based on the number of valid claims filed as well as on the number and type of LCD flat panel products that consumers purchased. It is expected that a minimum payment of $25 will be made to all eligible consumers who submit a valid claim.

Any money remaining after claims are paid will be distributed to charities, governmental bodies or other beneficiaries approved by the court.