Epic Games and the FTC recently announced a deal in which the game developer will pay $245 million to settle claims about in-game purchases. The FTC will use the settlement money for refunds for certain affected players, but are you eligible? The FTC has published a handy FAQ to help you find out if you’re eligible to get some money back. Here is what you need to know.
Who is eligible for a refund?
First off, the FTC is only paying US accounts. Assuming you live in the US, those eligible for a refund include both parents and children in a variety of situations. Here is the FTC’s breakdown of eligible parties (as written by the FTC):
- Parents whose children made an unauthorized credit card purchase in the Epic Games Store between January 2017 and November 2018
- Fortnite players who were charged in-game currency (V-Bucks) for unwanted in-game items (such as cosmetics, llamas, or battle passes) between January 2017 and September 2022
- Fortnite players whose accounts were locked between January 2017 and September 2022 after disputing unauthorized charges with their credit card companies.
How to get a refund
Those who believe they are eligible for money back don’t need to do anything currently, the FTC said. The refund program is still being assembled, it seems. “When we have more information about the refund program, we will post updates here and send email notices to customers who paid for in-game purchases,” the FTC said. You can sign up for email updates to say up to date.
Beware of scams
With a settlement of this size and scale–$245 million is a lot of money, after all–there will inevitably be bad actors trying to scam people for money with bogus claims about the settlement process. The FTC said it will never ask those eligible for a refund to pay to file a claim. “Don’t pay anyone who promises you an FTC refund in exchange for a fee,” the FTC said.
In addition to the $245 million for in-app purchase issues, Epic will pay $275 million as a civil penalty for COPPA violations pertaining to collecting personal information from Fortnite players under the age of 13 without parental consent, as well as other issues.
The FTC is also in the midst of suing Microsoft over its proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Microsoft’s president said it tried to give peace a chance but will now defend itself in court.
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