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Iowa Microsoft Case Settlement

Attorneys announced a settlement in the Iowa Microsoft case the day before Valentine’s Day, but it was not until yesterday that they announced the details. Under the deal Judge Rosenberg preliminarily approved yesterday, consumers would receive up to $179.95 million: $16 for Windows or MS-DOS; $25 for Excel; $29 for Office; and $10 for Microsoft Word, Works and Home Essential software.

A hearing on final approval is scheduled for August 31, 2007. To receive payment, check the settlement website beginning April 25, 2007 and fill out and submit your Claim Form by December 14, 2007. Microsoft will donate half of all unclaimed proceeds to the Iowa Department of Education to provide computer hardware and software for Iowa classrooms. In Minnesota, this amounted to over $50 million for their schools.

The most amazing thing, something I did not predict, was that the payments will be made in cash. Although Roxanne Conlin is demanding $75 million in attorney fees, the fact that Microsoft will be paying cash indicates she must have done something right. Attorney fee awards in similar cases have run about 10% of the actual award. Plus, I believe even Faust might think $75 million a tad inequitable. Let’s hope this is just a starting point for negotiation.

Brett Trout

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