1. Sutts, Strosberg LLP is co-counsel with Andrew Morganti in a class action commenced in Windsor, Ontario on February 23, 2012.
2. We are co-operating with counsel in companion actions commenced in British Columbia (Branch MacMaster LLP ) and Québec (Sylvestre Fafard Painchaud) to prosecute the actions nationally.
3. The lawsuit alleges that from April 1, 2010, Hachette Book Group Canada Ltd., Hachette Book Group, Inc., Harpercollins Canada Limited, Harpercollins Publishers, Inc., Macmillan Publishers, Inc., Penguin Group (USA), Inc., Pearson Canada Inc., c.o.b. as Penguin Group (Canada), Simon & Schuster Canada, Inc. and Simon & Schuster, Inc. ( the “Publishers”) and Apple, Inc. conspired to fix the prices at which eBooks were sold in Canada and worldwide.
4. Justice Terrence Patterson of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice has been appointed the case management judge for the Ontario action.
PARTIAL SETTLEMENT APPROVED
5. The plaintiffs in the actions across Canada reached a national settlement with the Publishers, subject to approval of the Courts. The Publishers did not admit liability, but they agreed to pay in total $3.175 million for the benefit of the settlement class members and to provide co-operation to the plaintiffs in prosecuting the actions against Apple.
6. The Ontario Court certified the Ontario action for persons in all provinces except Québec and the Québec Court authorized the Québec action for persons in Québec for settlement purposes only. Class members are: All persons in Canada who purchased eBooks in Canada between April 1, 2010 and September 22, 2014, except the defendants and their officers, subsidiaries and affiliates.
7. The date by which potential class members had to exclude themselves from the class if they did not wish to participate in the actions has passed and no one opted out.
8. On October 6, 2014, the Ontario Court approved the settlement agreement with the Publishers for all provinces except Québec and authorized counsel to continue to hold the settlement amount in trust for the benefit of the class members while the litigation continues against Apple. The Ontario Approval Order may be viewed here.
9. On November 4, 2014, the Québec Court also approved the serttlement agreement on the same terms as the Ontario Court.
10. The Courts also approved counsel’s fee agreements with the plaintiffs and awarded counsel fees and litigation expenses from the settlement amount.
THE ONGOING ACTION
11. The actions are ongoing against Apple.
12. A schedule for steps in the Ontario action has been agreed to with the Ontario Court. The plaintiff has filed her certification record in Ontario and a responding record has been received from Apple. The plaintiff’s responding certification record is the next step in the litigation and will be filed shortly.
13. An important part of the settlement is the co-operation the Publishers will provide to counsel to assist in the ongoing prosecution of the actions against Apple. Proffers will be scheduled with the Publishers to obtain this co-operation shortly.
14. If you would like to speak to someone at Sutts, Strosberg LLP about this class action, please use our toll free line 1.800.229.5323, extension 8296.
15. If you would like to know more about how a class action works, click here.