Fla. AG announces $6.4M settlement with law book publisher

By Bryan Cohen | Feb 20, 2013

TALLAHASSEE, Florida (Legal Newsline) - Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi announced a $6.4 million settlement Tuesday with a law book publisher to resolve allegations of automatic subscription renewals without adequate disclosures.

CCH Incorporated, through its Kluwer International, Loislaw.com, Aspen Publishers and Wolters Kluwer brands, allegedly used automatic subscription plans, also known as negative option plans, when selling its products. CCH allegedly marketed its print products through trial offers and then placed customers in automatic subscription renewal plans without conspicuous and clear disclosures of renewal terms.

"Consumers who receive products or services that they do not recall ever ordering or subscribing to should call 1-866-9-NO-SCAM," Bondi said.

Under the terms of the settlement, CCH will mail approximately 5,000 consumers refund notices providing a total refund amount of up to $5 million, pay Bondi's office $1.4 million in attorney fees, future enforcement efforts and other costs, and modify its business practices to ensure that automatic shipment and automatic subscription renewal plans include appropriate disclosures and that customers provide affirmative consent to the terms.

Floridians potentially eligible for a refund paid CCH for a first update, supplement or new edition in an automatic shipment plan or paid for a first automatic renewal of publication between February 13, 2009, and February 13, 2013. Consumers requesting a refund will be issued a refund for all supplements, updates and new editions or automatic renewals, in addition to shipping and handling charges. Consumers must request a refund and return the last update received.

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