Class Action Against Apple: A Proposed Settlement

MONTREAL — A $12 million settlement has reportedly been reached with Apple over the price of e-books sold in Canada between April 1, 2010 and March 10, 2017.

Three law firms representing the plaintiffs said Monday, saying the proposed settlement will need to be approved by courts in Ontario and Quebec to take effect.

Class actions have been brought in Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec against the American giant and five e-book publishers.

Plaintiffs allege that “the price of e-books sold in Canada between April 1, 2010 and March 10, 2017 was artificially high due to a conspiracy to fix, maintain, increase or control the price of e-books.”

A statement issued by Branch MacMaster LLP, Sylvestre Painchaud SENCRL and Strosberg Sasso Sutts LLP states that “all persons in Canada who purchased the defendants’ e-books between April 1, 2010 and March 10, 2017 are automatically included in the actions actions”, specifying that those who want to participate in the collective actions and benefit from the settlement “have nothing to do for the moment”.

In September 2014, a settlement agreement was reached and court-approved with publishers Hachette Book Group Canada Ltd, Hachette Book Group Inc., HarperCollins Canada Limited, HarperCollins Publishers LLC, Macmillan Publishers Inc., Penguin Group (USA) LLC , Penguin Canada Books Inc. and Simon & Schuster Canada, a division of CBS Canada Holdings.

Applications for approval of the settlement with Apple are expected to take place at a hearing on November 30 in Ontario and December 14 in Quebec.

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