Judge approves settlement of $875M class-action suit against Comcast

Putting closure to an $875 million class action suit filed against Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA) 11 years ago, a Philadelphia federal judge approved a settlement that involves a cash payment of around $16.7 million and some free VOD movies for involved customers.

Judge John R. Padova's decision grants about 800,000 current and former Comcast TV customers in Pennsylvania the option of $15 in cash or service credits, or services such as pay-per-view movies valued at up to $43.90.

The plaintiffs filed the antitrust suit in 2003, accusing Comcast of swapping cable systems in the Philadelphia area with smaller MSOs so it could cluster its systems and raise prices.

The case appeared headed for settlement in 2011, but Comcast elected to have the matter heard by the High Court. In writing the decision on the 5-4 ruling in favor of Comcast, Justice Antonin Scalia said the plaintiffs failed to show they were sufficiently harmed, or that damages could be proved class-wide.

In April, the complaint was amended a fourth time with a smaller class of plaintiffs who chose to carry on with the matter.

For more:
- read this Philadelphia Inquirer story

Related links:
Comcast settles 11-year-old, $875M class-action suit for $16.7M and some free VOD movies
Supreme Court hears Comcast argument to limit class action suit
The Supreme Court said in June it would hear Comcast's argument
Cablevision, Time Warner Cable face class-action lawsuits

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