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In a recent development, Apple has chosen to settle a class action lawsuit related to its Family Sharing feature, agreeing to pay $25 million to conclude the legal proceedings. Originating in 2019, the lawsuit alleged that Apple had misrepresented the functionality of third-party app subscriptions within the Family Sharing framework.
Family Sharing, designed to enable users to share subscriptions among family members, faced criticism due to developers having the option to exclude their apps from this sharing capability. The lawsuit stemmed from the contention that Apple’s opt-out policy restricted the sharing of certain subscriptions, prompting legal action.
Despite settling, Apple maintains its innocence, asserting that it did not engage in any misleading practices. The decision to settle was driven by the desire to avoid the potential expenses and complexities associated with a jury trial.
Eligible participants in the U.S. who were part of a Family Sharing group with at least one other member and purchased an app subscription via the App Store between June 21, 2015, and January 30, 2019, qualify for a monetary settlement. Each filing class member stands to receive $30, though the final amount will depend on the total number of claims. The maximum payout per claimant is capped at $50, with up to $10 million allocated for attorney fees. Emails notifying eligible customers about the settlement have begun circulating this week.
To claim a settlement, customers have until March 1, 2024, and a final approval hearing is scheduled for April 2, 2024. Detailed information can be found on the settlement’s official website, providing users with the necessary guidance for the claims process.
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