1. What is this litigation about?
The class action lawsuit included direct purchasers of thin film transistor liquid
crystal display ("TFT-LCD") panels and certain products containing those panels.
A direct purchaser is a person or business who bought a TFT-LCD panel, or a television,
computer monitor or notebook computer containing a TFT-LCD panel, directly from
one or more of the Defendants, Co-Conspirators, affiliates or subsidiaries themselves,
as opposed to an intermediary (such as a retail store). The lawsuit alleged that
Defendants and Co-Conspirators conspired to raise and fix the prices of TFT-LCD
panels, resulting in overcharges to purchasers of those panels and products containing
those panels. The complaint alleged that the Defendants and Co-Conspirators violated
the U.S. antitrust laws by establishing a global cartel that set artificially high
prices for, and restricted the supply of, various sizes of TFT-LCD panels. Defendants
denied Plaintiffs’ allegations. All settlements have been finally approved by the
An order approving distribution of the settlement funds to Direct Purchaser class
members was approved by the Court on July 12, 2013.
An order approving a second and final distribution of the settlement funds to Direct
Purchaser class members was approved by the Court on January 13, 2014.
Checks have been mailed to eligible Class Members as stated below, and the claims
process will be completed by approximately Spring 2014.
2. Which TFT-LCD manufacturers are part of this litigation?
The Defendant companies, and the companies alleged by Plaintiffs to be subsidiaries
and affiliates of the Defendant companies, are: Acer Display Technology, Inc., AU
Optronics Corporation, AU Optronics Corporation America, Chi Mei Corporation, Chi
Mei Optoelectronics Corporation, Chi Mei Optoelectronics USA, Inc. (formerly known
as International Display Technology U.S.A., Inc.), Chunghwa Picture Tubes, Ltd.,
CMO Japan Co., Ltd. (formerly known as International Display Technology Ltd.), Epson
Electronics America, Inc., Epson Imaging Devices Corporation, Fujitsu Limited, Hannspree
Inc., HannStar Display Corporation, Hitachi Displays, Ltd., Hitachi Electronic Devices
(USA), Inc., Hitachi, Ltd., International Business Machines Corporation, LG Display
America, Inc., LG Display Co., Ltd., LG Electronics, Inc., LG Electronics USA, Inc.,
Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. (also known as Royal Philips Electronics),
Mitsui & Co. (Taiwan), Ltd., Nexgen Mediatech, Inc., Nexgen Mediatech USA, Inc.,
Philips Consumer Electronics, Philips Electronics North America, Quanta Display
Inc., S-LCD, Samsung Electronics America, Inc., Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Samsung
Semiconductor, Inc., Ltd., Sanyo Consumer Electronics Co., Ltd., Sharp Corporation,
Sharp Electronics Corporation, Tatung Company of America, Inc., Toshiba America
Electronic Components, Inc., Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc., Toshiba
Corporation, Toshiba Mobile Display Co., Ltd., and Unipac Optoelectronics Corporation.
The Plaintiffs alleged that the following companies are Co-Conspirators: Hydis Technologies
Co., Ltd., IPS Alpha Technology, Ltd., Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Mitsui &
Co., Ltd., NEC LCD Technologies, Ltd., Panasonic Corporation (formerly known as
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.), Panasonic Corporation of North America
(formerly known as Matsushita Electric Corporation of America), Sanyo Electric Company,
Ltd., Sanyo North America Corporation and Seiko Epson Corporation.
3. What is a TFT-LCD?
A TFT-LCD is a display technology used in flat panel televisions as well as in computer
monitors, notebook computers, mobile phones, personal digital assistants, and other
4. Why is this a class action?
In a class action, one or more people and/or companies, called class representatives,
sue on behalf of people and companies who have similar claims. Together, they make
up a class.
5. If I purchased a TFT-LCD product indirectly am I a member of the Direct Purchaser
No, if you purchased a TFT-LCD product indirectly, meaning you made a purchase through
a retailer, wholesaler, or distributor who is not one of the Defendants, you are
not part of the classes for this settlement. However, you may be part of the Indirect
Purchaser class. Please CLICK HERE
to visit the LCD INDIRECT PURCHASER LITIGATION AND SETTLEMENTS website for more
6. How do I know if I am part of the Litigation Classes?
The Court certified the following Litigation Classes for purposes of litigation
Panel Class: All persons and entities who, between January 1, 1999 and December
31, 2006, directly purchased a TFT-LCD panel in the United States from any
defendant or any subsidiary thereof, or any named affiliate or any named co-conspirator.
You are part of the Panel Class if you meet all of the following criteria:
- You purchased a TFT-LCD panel as a stand-alone item – not incorporated into another
- You purchased the TFT-LCD panel in the United States. This means the panel was billed
to and/or shipped to the United States;
- You purchased the TFT-LCD panel from one of the companies listed in Question 2.
This means that you did not purchase the TFT-LCD panel from a retailer, wholesaler
or distributor who was not one of the companies listed in Question 2; and
- You purchased the TFT-LCD panel between January 1, 1999 and December 31, 2006.
Product Class: All persons and entities who, between January 1, 1999 and
December 31, 2006, directly purchased a television, computer monitor or notebook
computer in the United States containing a TFT-LCD panel, from any defendant or
any subsidiary thereof, or any named affiliate or any named co-conspirator.
You are part of the Product Class if you meet all of the following criteria:
- You purchased a television, computer monitor or notebook computer containing a TFT-LCD
- You purchased the television, computer monitor or notebook computer in the United
States. This means the product was billed to or shipped to the United States;
- You purchased the television, computer monitor or notebook computer directly from
one of the companies listed in Question 2. This means that you did not purchase
the television, computer monitor or notebook computer from a retailer, wholesaler
or distributor who was not one of the companies listed in Question 2; and
- You purchased the television, computer monitor or notebook computer between January
1, 1999 and December 31, 2006.
You may be a member of one or both of the two classes (see Question 7). Similarly,
you may also be a member of the indirect purchaser classes that have also been certified
by the Court. An indirect purchaser is someone who purchased a TFT-LCD panel or
product containing a TFT-LCD panel through an intermediary such as a distributor,
wholesaler or retailer that is not specifically named in the response to Question
2. However, you may not submit claims in both this case and in the indirect purchaser
case for the same purchase(s). Please
CLICK HERE to visit the LCD INDIRECT PURCHASER LITIGATION AND SETTLEMENTS
website for more information. The deadline to file a claim for direct purchases
has passed and the Settlement Funds have been distributed as described below.
7. Can I be in more than one class?
Yes. You are allowed to be in more than one class. The two Classes are similar in
that they include individuals and entities that directly purchased TFT-LCD panels
and/or certain products containing those panels from one or more Defendants. Use
this chart to help determine which class you may be a part of:
Date of Purchase
January 1, 1999 – December 31, 2006
January 1, 1999 – December 31, 2006
Television containing TFT-LCD panel; computer monitor containing TFT-LCD panel;
notebook computer containing TFT-LCD panel
8. Are there exceptions to Class membership?
Yes. You are not included in the Classes if you are:
- a Defendant, subsidiary, affiliate or Co-Conspirator named in the response to Question
- an officer, director or employee of a Defendant in this action;
- the parent company of a Defendant in this action;
- the legal representative, heirs or assigns of any Defendant in this action;
- a federal, state or local governmental entity;
- a judge assigned to this action or a member of the staff or immediate family of
a judge assigned to this action;
- a juror assigned to this action; or
- a direct purchaser who previously filed a timely request for exclusion.
9. What are my rights as part of the Litigation Classes?
You were previously given an opportunity to exclude yourself or file a claim by
April 5, 2012. You were also allowed an opportunity to comment or object to the
proposed settlements. All settlements have now been finally approved and the time
to exclude yourself, comment or file a claim has passed.
10. When and where will the Court decide to approve the settlements?
All settlements have been approved.
11. What did the settlements provide?
The Settlement Fund was over $317 million. From that amount certain administrative
fees and costs, as well as attorneys’ fees and costs, were deducted and the resulting
Net Settlement Fund was distributed to the Class. The court also authorized the
withholding of 18% of the Net Settlement Fund from the first distribution on all
claims where the award amount was greater than $10,000 to account for issues with
disputed and untimely claims. These issues have been resolved and the Court has
approved a motion to distribute the remaining funds. For more details you may review
the Order Approving Second Distribution of Settlement Funds to the Direct Purchaser
Class Members on the Court Documents page of this website.
12. How was the Net Settlement Fund allocated?
The distribution of the Net Settlement Fund was based on the value of the finished
product or panel and on the number of valid claims that were filed. The plan of
allocation divided the Net Settlement Fund in half, with 50% distributed to members
of the Panel Class and 50% distributed to members of the Product Class. For each
TFT-LCD finished product (monitors, notebook computers, televisions and other products),
claimants were paid based on the value of the panel in the finished product. The
percentages of panel value in a finished product were 75% for monitors, 15% for
notebook computers, 47% for televisions, and 7.6% for other products.
13. When will I receive a payment?
Payments for the second distribution were mailed on DATE.
14. I need my check reissued. What do I do?
If you would like to have your check reissued, you will need to send a letter to
the Claims Administrator explaining why the check needs to be reissued and to whom
it should be reissued. Please also include the original check if you have it. Note,
no checks from the second distribution will be reissued past DATE. Pursuant
to the Court order approving the second distribution, funds from checks that are
not cashed within 28 days of the initial issuance will revert to the Net Settlement
Fund and may be distributed as a cy pres distribution to one of more charitable
organizations that bear a substantial nexus to the interests of the class members,
subject to Court approval.
15. I think that I am entitled to a check and I have not received one. What do I
Please contact a Call Center Representative at 1-877-888-3757.
16. Do I have to pay taxes on this?
We cannot offer any tax advice. Please speak with an accounting professional.
17. Is it too late to file a claim?