THE CLASS ACTIONS
• The Ontario Court approved the settlement with Apple on March 7, 2023.
• The Québec hearing seeking approval of the settlement has been scheduled to proceed by judicial video conference on Wednesday, June 14, 2023 at 9:15 am. The video conference link to join the hearing is: Rejoindre la réunion Microsoft Teams.
• The Distribution Protocol approved by the Ontario Court that will govern the distribution of the settlement funds to Settlement Class Members and for their benefit if the settlement is approved in Québec, may be reviewed here.
• The Ontario orders can be reviewed here.
• Please follow the Administration website ebookscanadiansettlement.cafor ongoing updates.
1. Strosberg Sasso Sutts LLP is co-counsel in class actions concerning eBooks purchased in Canada that were commenced on February 23, 2012 and September 22, 2016 against Apple Inc. and Apple Canada Inc. (“Apple”), Hachette Book Group Canada Ltd., Hachette Book Group, Inc., HarperCollins Canada Limited, HarperCollins Publishers, LLC., Macmillan Publishers, Inc., Penguin Group (USA), LLC (formerly Penguin Group (USA) Inc.), Penguin Canada Book, Inc., Simon & Schuster Canada, Inc. a division of CBS Canada Holdings Co. (the “Publishers”). Companion actions were also commenced in British Columbia and Québec, permitting the actions to be prosecuted nationally.
2. The class actions alleged that from April 1, 2010 the price of eBooks sold in Canada was artificially high because Apple and the Publishers conspired to fix, maintain, increase or control the price at which eBooks were sold in Canada and worldwide contrary to Part VI of the Competition Act, the common law and the Civil Code of Québec.
PARTIAL SETTLEMENT APPROVED
3. The plaintiffs reached a $3.175 million national settlement with the Publishers in the first action for the period between April 1, 2010 and September 21, 2014 and that settlement was approved by the Courts. The Courts authorized counsel to continue to hold the settlement amount in trust for the benefit of the settlement class members while the actions continued against Apple.
PROPOSED SETTLEMENT REACHED
4. The plaintiffs have now reached a $12 million national settlement with Apple in the actions for the period between April 1, 2010 and March 10, 2017, subject to approval of the Courts in Ontario and Québec. The settlement has been approved in Ontario. If the proposed settlement is approved in Québec, it will conclude the litigation against all parties. The settlement agreement with Apple may be reviewed here.
THE SETTLEMENT CLASS
5. If the proposed settlement is approved in Québec, settlement class members will be:
All persons in Canada who purchased eBooks in Canada between April 1, 2010 and March 10, 2017, except those who opt out of the actions, the Defendants and certain related parties.
6. Under the proposed settlement, settlement class members will RELEASE Apple and the Publishers from claims regarding the purchase of eBooks in Canada between April 1, 2010 and March 10, 2017, and commit to discontinue or dismiss any other proceedings they may have outstanding.
SETTLEMENT APPROVAL HEARINGS
7. The Ontario hearing was concluded in January 2023. The Québec hearing is currently being scheduled. The Notice concerning the Proposed Settlement can be reviewed here.
8. Please note, the Courts cannot change the terms of the proposed settlement, they can only approve it or not.
OPTING OUT OF THE CLASS ACTIONS
9. The time to exclude yourself from the class action has passed.
10. If you opted out, you keep any right you might still have to bring your own lawsuit, but will not receive the benefit of this proposed settlement. Please note, if you opted out, limitation periods that may bar your claim will begin to run again. If you did not opt out of the actions by November 11, 2022, you will be bound by the proposed settlement if it is approved by the Courts and will not be able to opt out of the actions in the future.
THE DISTRIBUTION OF SETTLEMENT PROCEEDS
11. If the proposed settlement with Apple is approved, the net settlement proceeds will be combined with the net settlement proceeds from the earlier settlement with the Publishers and distributed to settlement class members in accordance with the terms of a Distribution Protocol approved by the Courts.
This website has been developed to provide general information to settlement class members. The site is not designed to answer questions about your individual situation or entitlement. Do not rely upon the information provided on this website as legal advice in respect of your individual situation nor use it as a substitute for individual legal advice.
- The Courts in Ontario and Québec have been asked to approve a proposed $12 million settlement with Apple and a distribution protocol to govern the distribution of the settlement proceeds.
- The hearing in Ontario was completed on January 13, 2023. On March 7, 2023, the Ontario Court approved the settlement and the distribution protocol.
- The Québec hearing seeking approval of the settlement has been scheduled to proceed by judicial video conference on Wednesday, June 14, 2023 at 9:15 am. The video conference link to join the hearing is: Rejoindre la réunion Microsoft Teams.
- You may review the distribution protocol the Courts are asked to approve here. It supplements and overrides some of the provisions concerning distribution contained in the settlement agreement.
- The Ontario orders can be reviewed here.
- Please follow the Administration website www.ebookscanadiansettlement.ca for ongoing updates.