MONTPELIER, Vt. (Legal Newsline) - A Texas-based online company will pay more than $160,000 to consumers who signed up for recreation events on its website, according to a recent announcement by Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell.

The refunds are the result of alleged deceptive practices used by Active Network LLC to get consumers to sign up for ActiveAdvantage, a membership program that provided discounts when they were registering for races. The consumers would then be charged $59 to $65 per year for this membership while fewer than 10 percent used ActiveAdvantage, Sorrell claims.

Many consumers said they didn't willfully sign up or didn't sign up on purpose, Sorrell said.

“Businesses may not deceptively enroll consumers in programs with recurring charges when their credit card information has been collected for a different purchase,” Sorrell said.

Sorrell advised that people who register for online events “carefully read the terms of anything that they purchase online and vigilantly examine credit card statements for unexpected charges.” will be forced to pay $25,000 to the state of Vermont, give refunds for the full amount for each Vermonter who paid for ActiveAdvantage and will have to explicitly say on its website what the user is buying.

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