Grabar Law Office Files Antitrust Class Action on Behalf of Students who Purchased Course Materials Through Inclusive Access

As alleged in the Complaint, in 2016, the Publisher Defendants formed EPEG, whose ostensible purpose was to fight textbook counterfeiting.  However, EPEG’s actual purpose was to give the Publisher Defendants the opportunity to communicate with one another to facilitate their collusive imposition of Inclusive Access, and to impose pretextual anti-counterfeiting policies that helped restrict competition for textbooks.  All three Publisher Defendants are EPEG members and have been since its inception.   The Publisher Defendants and EPEG developed the EPEG Guidelines, that in effect limit which retailers are permitted to sell textbooks, thereby helping the Publisher Defendants to control the market and to charge higher prices by arbitrarily designating off-campus and online booksellers, who primarily sell used books, to be in violation or not compliant with the EPEG Guidelines.

The case is being brought on behalf of each of the following defined Classes:

The Publisher-Purchaser Class: All students at institutions of higher education in the United States who purchased Course Materials through Inclusive Access directly from one or more of  the Publisher Defendants from January 1, 2016 until the effects of Defendants’ conspiracy end (“Class Period”). Excluded from the Publisher-Purchaser Class are: Defendants, their subsidiaries, parents, affiliates, joint ventures, and employees and co-conspirators; federal governmental entities and instrumentalities; states and their subdivisions, agencies, and instrumentalities; and any judge(s) or jurors assigned to this case.

The Retailer-Purchaser Class: All students at institutions of higher education in the United States who purchased Course Materials through Inclusive Access directly from a licensed on-campus bookstore operated by a  Retailer Co-Conspirator from January 1, 2016 until the effects of the conspiracy end  (“Class Period”). Excluded from the Retailer-Purchaser Class are the Defendants, their subsidiaries, parents, affiliates, joint ventures, and employees and co-conspirators; federal governmental entities and instrumentalities; states and their subdivisions, agencies, and instrumentalities; and any judge(s) or jurors assigned to this case.

A copy of the complaint can be viewed here: file-stamped compl

To learn more about this action, contact us today!

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