US: Judge concerned over Apple eBook settlement

A federal judge Thursday expressed concern for the proposed $450 million settlement offered by Apple in a class action lawsuit against the company’s alleged collusion to manipulate eBook prices, reports say.

US District Judge Denise Cote said Thursday that payouts to affected eBook customers could be reduced due to a clause in the settlement agreement that says Apple will only have to pay $70 million if its appeal to reverse an earlier ruling against the company is successful.

The settlement hinges on Apple’s appeal of Judge Cote’s earlier ruling that found Apple guilty of fixing eBooks prices in a lawsuit filed by the US Department of Justice. Following the DOJ’s case, 33 states filed their own suits on behalf of eBook customers.

But Apple’s settlement of the states’ case depends on is appeal of the DOJ’s case.

Judge Cote also raised concern that Apple will not pay interest on the settlement while the appeal is pending.

The DOJ successfully sued Apple for colluding with major eBook publishers to manipulate product prices. A damages hearing for the states’ case would be held August 25 if a settlement falls through.

Full content: Times of India

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