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If you purchased disposable contact lenses made by Alcon, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care (JJVC), CVI, or Bausch & Lomb between June 1, 2013, and Dec. 4, 2018, then there’s great news for you. ABB Optical Group LLC has reached a $30.2 million settlement in a class action lawsuit over allegations of a price-fixing conspiracy. Wondering how much you could receive from this settlement? Keep reading to find out!
How Much Will You Get?
Individuals who are eligible to make a claim can expect to receive a portion of the settlement fund. The exact amount each person will receive depends on multiple factors, including the number of valid claims submitted, attorney fees, and administrative costs. However, rest assured that after these deductions, class members will receive a proportionate share of the settlement money.
Who Can Make a Claim?
If you purchased disposable contact lenses made by Alcon, JJVC, CVI, or Bausch & Lomb during the specified period, you may be eligible to make a claim. However, it’s important to note that purchases of Bausch & Lomb contacts made from 1-800 Contacts after July 1, 2015, are excluded from the settlement. To verify if your purchase is covered, you can refer to the settlement website for a comprehensive list of contact lenses included in the settlement.
Understanding the Lawsuit
This settlement is the result of a class action lawsuit filed against contact lens manufacturers and distributor ABB Optical Group. The lawsuit alleged that these companies engaged in an illegal price-fixing conspiracy, artificially inflating the price of contact lenses for consumers. The defendants, including Bausch & Lomb and JJVC, were accused of entering into “Unilateral Pricing Policies” (UPPs) to hinder competition from online and discount contact lens retailers. By preventing these sellers from offering discounts, the defendants allegedly forced consumers to pay inflated prices.
How Did It Impact Consumers?
The lawsuit highlighted that purchasing contact lenses in the United States comes with certain limitations. Consumers need a prescription not only to determine the power and type of contact lens they need but also to specify the brand. As a result, consumers have limited options and are unable to explore different brands without obtaining additional prescriptions. This limitation restricts their ability to seek more affordable alternatives, ultimately leading to higher costs for contact lens users.
The Settlement Process
While the defendants vehemently denied the allegations and fought against the class action lawsuit, a federal court certified a consumer class in December 2018. Since then, several contact lens manufacturers have agreed to settlements, including ABB Optical Group LLC. Under the terms of the agreement, the settlement money paid by ABB will be combined with funds from previous settlements. After deducting attorney fees and administrative costs, class members who have submitted claims will receive their share of the settlement fund.
How to Make a Claim
If you are a class member who has already submitted a claim in settlements with Bausch & Lomb or CooperVision Inc., you will automatically be included in the settlement with ABB Optical Group LLC. However, if you haven’t yet submitted a claim, you must do so by March 10, 2021. You can submit your claim either online or by mail, providing details about your contact lens purchases, including the type of lens, quantity, price, and place and date of purchase.
Opting Out or Objecting to the Settlement
If you wish to opt out of or object to the class action settlement, you must do so by March 10, 2021. It’s essential to follow the specified procedures to exercise your rights. Additionally, a fairness hearing is scheduled for March 10, 2021, where the court will evaluate the settlement’s fairness and consider any objections raised.
The ABB Optical Group LLC contact lens settlement presents a significant opportunity for eligible individuals to receive compensation for alleged price-fixing practices. By claiming your portion of the settlement fund, you can exercise your rights and potentially recover a portion of the money paid for contact lenses during the specified period. Take action before the deadline and ensure that your voice is heard. To learn more about similar legal matters and stay informed, visit 5 WS, the go-to platform for news and insights on various topics.