Tuesday, Microsoft agreed to settle class action lawsuits in five US states and the District of Columbia. The settlement, which covers various antitrust and unfair competition lawsuits brought against the company in the wake of its federal antitrust suit, will cost the software giant $200 million in software and computer-related voucher. It ends lawsuits in Kansas, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota and Tennessee, and Washington, D.C.
"We're pleased by the opportunity to help schools ... get the computers and software they need," said Brad Smith, general counsel for Microsoft. "This settlement allows us to focus on the future and building great software, and avoids the cost and uncertainty of litigation."
This week's settlements follow similar deals by Microsoft in nine other states, including recent settlements in California, Florida, and West Virginia; five other states--Arizona, Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico and Wisconsin--still have antitrust-related class action lawsuits pending against the company. Under terms of the settlement, consumers in Kansas settled for $32 million, while Washington D.C. settled for $6.2 million; settlement figures for the other states are currently unavailable. As with previous settlements, Microsoft will provide vouchers for customers to purchase computer hardware, software, and training. Half of the unused vouchers will be given to the poorest schools in each state.