SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced on Sept. 4 that Samsung, a multinational electronics company, will pay $29 million to Washington consumers.
Under the consent decree filed in King County Superior Court, Samsung will pay $29 million to resolve the Attorney General’s price-fixing claims, concluding a lawsuit against seven companies.
The lawsuit alleges Samsung and other CRT manufacturers, including LG, Panasonic, Hitachi, Chungwha, Toshiba, and Philips, engaged in a price-fixing scheme to drive up the cost of CRTs from 1995 to 2007. During those 12 years, the price-fixing conspiracy caused millions of Washington consumers to be overcharged for their CRT televisions and computer monitors. The seven companies involved in the conspiracy are paying Washington a total of $39.65 million.
“When powerful interests illegally conspire behind closed doors to drive up the cost of their products, Washingtonians lose out,” Ferguson said. “We are returning the money back where it belongs: the pockets of Washingtonians.”
Until the late 2000s, CRTs were the primary technology for television screens and computer monitors. In 1999, CRT monitors accounted for over 90 percent of the retail market for computer monitors in North America. The technology has largely fallen out of use in recent years, superseded by LCD screens. Samsung no longer produces CRTs.
If you lived in Washington from 1995 to 2007 and bought a CRT screen from a retailer, you may be eligible for a refund. Ferguson expects to hire a claims administrator within the next several months, who will begin distributing funds in early 2019. All claims filed before then will be forwarded to the claims administrator, who may contact consumers for additional information.
For questions about the claims process, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (206) 332-7080.