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Updated: DirecTV to pay states $13.25 million


Story updated Dec. 15 at 3:46 p.m.

Satellite television provider DirecTV Inc. announced this morning that it has reached a settlement with state attorneys general that solidifies how it tells customers about cancellation fees and other contract terms. 

The settlement helps resolve a number of complaints that Iowans filed with the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division since January 2006, Attorney General Tom Miller said in a press release. So far this year, consumers have filed 92 complaints against DirecTV with the Consumer Protection Division, and 150 complaints in 2009.  As part of the agreement, DIRECTV must make restitution to qualified consumers, pay civil penalties and costs, and obey Iowa’s consumer laws.

“DIRECTV gained many Iowa customers by offering special promotions,” Miller said. “Unfortunately, many of these deals contained hidden costs, commitments and other fine print that misled consumers. This settlement helps reimburse these Iowa consumers, and the company must change the way it does business in the future.”

As part of the 49-state settlement, DirecTV said it will pay $13.25 million to the states to cover legal and investigation costs and fund consumer protection programs, including $185,000 to the state of Iowa.

For more information or to file a complaint, contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 281-5926, or in Iowa outside of the Des Moines area, call 1-888-777-4590, toll-free.

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