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Lawsuit outcome means money for electronics users

By Dylan O’Hagan [1]

BELLEVILLE – If you’re a Canadian who bought electronics between 1999 and 2002, the recent settlement in a class-action lawsuit could put a little more money in your wallet.

The lawsuit alleged that manufacturers of dynamic random access memory chips, used in  electronics such as computers, printers, graphics cards, video-game consoles, DVD players, MP3 players and personal video recorders, were involved in price fixing [2].

If you purchased such electronics you can get a minimum of $20 back – and more if you have proof of purchase for more than one device – by simply submitting a claim at themoneyismine.ca [3].

William Macleod, owner of MyZone Computers in Belleville, says most people probably no longer have sales receipts from items purchased more than 10 years ago. He himself is one of them, and so will be claiming for the $20 minimum:

http://www.qnetnews.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/no-recipts-no-problem1.mp3 [4]

 

The memory chips could be found in almost all electronics in the 1999-to-2002 period covered by the class-action suit, said Macleod.

The lawsuit was against several manufacturers of the DRAM memory chips, including Mitsubishi, Samsung, Toshiba, Hitachi and Infineon. It alleged that they inflated the price, causing consumers to overpay. The settlement from the lawsuit totalled $80 million for Canadians.

Macleod said that many consumers wouldn’t have noticed the price difference at the time. The difference would have been small for a single purchase, but overall would added up to a lot of money:

http://www.qnetnews.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/pennies-per-device.mp3 [5]

 

Canadians can apply for the automatic $20 refund only once per household. Companies can apply too, and for those that kept their receipts, this could have a much bigger impact, Macleod said:

http://www.qnetnews.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/company-payout-dram.mp3 [6]

 

Macleod said that while the rebate may not seem like much to an individual consumer, the real value lies in seeing the companies pay the money back:

http://www.qnetnews.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/selection-from-dram-interview.mp3 [7]

 

The cutoff date to claim the $20 is June 23.

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