Photo by Melpomene / Shutterstock.com
If you bought electronics that use lithium-ion batteries — or bought replacement batteries for such electronics — between 2000 and 2011, there’s a good chance you are owed money.
This potential payout stems from a class-action lawsuit against battery manufacturers accused of fixing prices. A law firm involved in the case, Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, recently explained:
“The lawsuit alleges that defendants and co-conspirators conspired to raise and fix the prices of cylindrical [lithium-ion battery] cells for more than ten years, resulting in overcharges to indirect purchasers of portable computers, camcorders, and power tools containing li-ion cylindrical batteries.”
The phrase “indirect purchasers” refers to people who bought these items from a third party, like a retailer, rather than directly from a manufacturer.
How to determine whether you’re eligible for payment
According to the lawsuit website, you might be eligible for compensation from the $45 million settlement if you both:
- Lived in the U.S. from Jan. 1, 2000, to May 31, 2011.
- Bought for yourself (rather than for resale) a product that is covered by the settlement at any brick-and-mortar or online retailer between Jan. 1, 2000, and May 31, 2011.
The products covered by the settlement are:
- Portable computers (including laptop PCs, notebook PCs, and netbook computers — except for Panasonic Toughbook products)
- Mobile phones, tablets, digital audio players and cameras (including smartphones)
- Cordless power tools (including driver drills and battery-powered saws)
Replacement batteries for these electronics are also covered by the settlement.
How to submit a claim for payment
You can submit a claim for payment by filling out the online claim form on the “Claim Form” section of the lawsuit website by the deadline of 11:59 p.m. PT on Nov. 29. According to the website, this process is “fast, easy, and takes less than 5 minutes.”
Proof of purchase of an eligible electronic is not required to file a claim.
Payments will be issued after the court has approved the final settlement and the claim submission process closes. You will be contacted before payments are issued to specify which payment option you prefer.
What’s your take on this $45 million lawsuit? Sound off below or on our Facebook page.