Microsoft settles antitrust lawsuit

In one of the largest antitrust lawsuits to date, Microsoft has agreed to settle with another US state in a class-action case that alleged claims of violation of antitrust laws.

In one of the largest antitrust lawsuits to date, Microsoft Corp. has agreed to settle with another US state in a class-action case that alleged claims of violation of Arizona’s antitrust laws.

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Michael O’Melia has given preliminary approval to a settlement between Microsoft and Arizona consumers of the company’s products for the years 1996 through to 2002.

The settlement will require Microsoft to make $104.6 million worth of vouchers available to all non-government purchasers of its application and operating system products. Arizona consumers will receive voucher values that are the second largest of any state, with $15 for operating systems and $9 for applications.

Brian Goodwin, Marty Harper, Lori Berke and Kelly Flood of the Phoenix office of Shughart Thomson & Kilroy PC brought the class action case before Judge O’Melia. Their case was later consolidated with a similar one brought by San Diego attorneys Len Simon, Mike Dowd and Frank Janacek of Lerach Coughlin Stoia & Robbins LLP.

“As a result of Judge O’Melia’s action today, the entire class of Arizona consumers will be given notice of the settlement terms and we will seek final approval later this year,” said Marty Harper, a lead attorney from Shughart Thomson & Kilroy who has been working on the case since 1999. “To my knowledge, this is the largest antitrust settlement representing indirect purchasers in Arizona history.”

“We were fortunate to have obtained the first class certification order in a case of this kind,” said Brian Goodwin, another lead attorney for the case and managing director of Shughart Thomson & Kilroy’s Arizona offices. “Our team also successfully assisted in the effort to establish once and for all that Arizona does allow its consumers to bring these types of cases.”