Ticketmaster class action settlement going into effect soon

Ticketmaster probably owes you money
Ticketmaster probably owes you money

Ticketmaster's $400 million settlement over jacked-up fees for things like "order-processing" and shipping costs has been approved and finalized, more than a decade after the class-action suit -- Schlesinger v. Ticketmaster -- was originally filed.

To collect on the settlement, fans will have to spend more money on tickets.

You are one of the 50 million class members if you purchased a ticket on Ticketmaster's website from Oct. 21, 1999, through Feb. 27, 2013. If you haven't received an email notice yet, buyers are told to check their accounts on or around June 18 to retrieve discount codes -- one for each transaction during the class period, with a cap of 17 -- that are good for a $2.25 credit on a future online ticket purchase.

If you arranged for UPS to deliver your ticket(s) during that time period, you'll receive one discount code per transaction that will take $5.00 off a future UPS charge.

Two discount codes can be combined on a single purchase, however, once a code is used, it will be extinguished and may not be used again.

Class members will also receive ticket codes that have the potential to be redeemed for free concert tickets in about a year if class members don't use up a certain amount ($10.5 million annually) of the discount codes. If this shortfall occurs, Ticketmaster will release roughly 100 tickets each for a majority of events at Live Nation-owned or operated venues. Each ticket code may be redeemed for two tickets.

"The events and venues selected will be within Live Nation's sole discretion and may also include Live Nation clubs such as the House of Blues," the settlement document reads. "Live Nation has the right but not the obligation to make tickets available at venues other than its amphitheaters."

Ticketmaster has promised a dedicated website for ticket codes that will be used to notify class members when new tickets become available. They will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

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 the company. That said, Ticketmaster "denies any fault or liability, or any charges of wrongdoing that have been or could have been asserted" during the case.

The lawsuit was originally filed in 2003, when Ticketmaster was part of IAC/InterActive Corp. Live Nation bought the ticketing firm for $2.5 billion in 2009.

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