A court ruled that Facebook must face a nationwide class-action lawsuit, where parents demand the company to provide refunds after it allowed children to spend their parents’ money without permission.
The court pointed out that the number of victims might reach hundreds of thousands. All of them may press their claim that the social media company has to change the way it handles online transactions by children. At the same time, it was ruled that the plaintiffs couldn’t demand refunds as a group under US Supreme Court precedent, because the amounts would vary from case to case. Nevertheless, the plaintiffs could still seek individual refunds. A trial is scheduled for October 2015.
The first lawsuit was brought 3 years ago, complaining that Facebook allowed children to use their parents’ bank cards to buy its own virtual currency, after which the company refused the refunds pointing at its “all sales a re final” policy. In respond, the social network claimed that plaintiffs’ claims were too disparate and the proposed injunction would not address them.
However, the state law protects parents and their children when the latter “occasionally” buy things they should not. That lawsuit was launched by two families: in one of them, a mother let a child to spend $20 on the game, but was later charged several hundred dollars for in-app purchases, which the child thought he made with virtual currency. The second family claimed that a child took their bank card without permission and spent more than a thousand dollars. As you know, children under 13 cannot sign up for Facebook, according to the network’s policies.