Fans who purchased resold tickets to Bruce Springsteen, Miley Cyrus and other shows are set to receive a payout under the terms of a new settlement.
The settlement, which stems from 2009 class action lawsuits, comes after Ticketmaster redirected customers to a more expensive resale affiliate called TicketsNow.com without telling them. In some cases, the company redirected customers to the scalping site even though it still had unsold tickets available at the original price. The practice took place for a wide range of events, including Cirque du Soleil shows and Detroit Pistons NBA matches.
Under the terms of the deal, disclosed earlier this week in Los Angeles federal court, customers burnt by the scheme can choose to receive $10 in cash or an 18.5% discount on any future purchase made through TicketsNow.com in the next two years. The discount option is worth a maximum of $18.50. Customers will be informed via the email address they used to buy the tickets in the first place or else by a letter in the mail.
Ticketmaster has set aside $16.5 million to cover the cost of the settlement which requires final approval by a judge before it takes effect. The lawyers in the deal will get $2.5 million and the three lead plaintiffs will receive $5,000 each. The company will also have to display a new web page every time it redirects customers to TicketsNow.com, explaining to users that they are leaving Ticketmaster for a separate resale site.
Ticketmaster and its corporate partner Live Nation (NYSE: LYV) have been subject to a series of lawsuits in recent years alleging anti-competitive behavior. Earlier this year, the company agreed to set aside $20 million to settle claims over its “order processing fees” and inflated UPS fees.