TALLAHASSEE, FL – LAWFUEL – Legal News – Attorney General Bill McCollum today announced a Florida company that placed unauthorized charges on consumers’ phone bills will offer refunds to consumers and change its business practices. Email Discount Network (EDN) charged more than 250,000 consumers nationwide a monthly fee for shopping coupons and discounts the company advertised on the internet.
An investigation by the Attorney General’s Economic Crimes Division found consumers were unaware they were being charged this monthly fee on their phone bills. The Attorney General’s Office filed a civil lawsuit against the company last September, claiming EDN websites failed to clearly disclose that the offers for savings were not free. Additionally, it was not made clear that customers who submitted personal information to the company would be charged unless they contacted EDN to cancel the charges.
The case was one of many recent investigations by the Attorney General’s Office into a practice known as “cramming,” in which companies place unauthorized charges on phone bills. Consumers who are victimized by this practice are often unaware that the extra charges are being placed on their phone bills. Attorney General McCollum cautioned consumers to examine their bills carefully because extra charges are often difficult to distinguish.
Under the settlement agreement, the company will make restitution to every consumer who was adversely affected by the company’s business practices and who submits a claims form, with restitution expected to exceed $1 million. EDN will also prominently disclose the monthly fee when it advertises on the internet, as well as the consumers’ obligation to cancel services to avoid being charged. EDN will reimburse the state for the costs of the investigation.
A copy of the settlement with EDN is available online at: