Ticketmaster settles lawsuit, will issue $400 million in credits

, Staff

After a decade long fight, Ticketmaster has agreed to a tentative settlement in a class action suit that if approved, would grant roughly $400 million in credit to 50 million ticket buyers.

If the settlement is approved, customers who purchased tickets that included an “order-processing fee” on Ticketmaster’s website from October 21, 1999, through February 27, 2013, will be eligible to receive a credit for future purchases. According to a court document, Ticketmaster will issue up to 161 million credits for $2.25 each and up to 4.9 million credits for $5 each. They will also make tickets for certain events available free to class members on a first-come, first-served basis at the end of each year for the next four years if members redeem less than $10.5 million of the coupons each year.

Originally filed in 2003 by five ticket buyers, the class action lawsuit alleges that Ticketmaster misled consumers by charging “order processing fees” and UPS “delivery fees” when the company didn’t spend on either. The plaintiffs alleged these fees were “secret profit-generators” for Ticketmaster, who also charged “convenience fees” and “facility fees”.

Ticketmaster is now owned by Live Nation, but at the time of the lawsuit was part of IAC/InterActive Corp. As part of the settlement, Ticketmaster changed the language on its website to clarify that order-processing and delivery charges may include a profit for Ticketmaster. Live Nation has not publicly admitted wrongdoing in the case.

A final approval hearing is scheduled for January in Los Angeles Superior Court.

For more information on the lawsuit, go here.

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