Facebook Settles Lawsuit Over Children's In-Game Purchases

Facebook has agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by parents whose children racked up charges by purchasing "credits" to use in games, according to court papers filed on Tuesday.

The proposed settlement, which will include an injunction against Facebook, won't prevent other parents from pursuing their own claims against the company. Other terms have not yet been made public. The entire settlement agreement is expected to be filed by Jan. 15 with U.S. District Court Judge Beth Labson in San Jose, California.

If accepted by Labson, the deal will resolve a lawsuit dating to 2012, when Glynnis Bohannon alleged that her son racked up hundreds of dollars on her credit card while playing "Ninja Star."

Bohannon alleged that she authorized her son to make $20 worth of game-credits, but that he then unintentionally purchased hundreds of dollars worth of credits. Her son said he thought he had bought those additional credits with virtual currency, and didn't realize that his mother's credit card was being charged, according to court documents.



The company agreed to settle the lawsuit after attending mediation in August.

Facebook isn't the only company to face allegations about unauthorized in-game purchases. Google and Apple both settled Federal Trade Commission complaints alleging that they unfairly billed parents for children's in-app purchases.

Google agreed last year to refund at least $19 million to parents, while Apple agreed to issue at least $32.5 million in refunds.

The FTC also made similar allegations against Amazon, which is fighting the case. The matter is pending in front of U.S. District Court Judge John Coughenour in Seattle.

Next story loading loading..