sirius XM 375-2019

Three law firms will receive $3.47 million in attorney fees in a class action settlement with SiriusXM over how the satcaster handled the terms of lifetime subscriptions. In an order issued Feb. 8 in U.S. District Court in California, the court approved the class action settlement which awards a lifetime subscription “that can actually last for their lifetime” to nearly one million individuals.

The original complaint dates back to Aug. 28, 2019 when Plaintiff Philip Alvarez went after the company with a class action suit. According to the complaint, SiriusXM advertised and sold its lifetime subscriptions by leading consumers to believe that lifetime subscriptions were for the lifetime of the consumer. But when consumers tried to transfer their lifetime subscriptions from one satellite radio to another or from one vehicle to another, Sirius XM took the position that the “lifetime” referred to is not the lifetime of the purchasing consumer, but the lifetime of the receiver or automobile.

The satellite broadcaster reached a settlement in principle and began negotiating a final settlement agreement in January 2019. Now that the settlement has been finalized and the court has signed off on it, we get a look at the terms.

According to the filing, everyone in the U.S. who purchased a paid subscription from Sirius XM (or one of its predecessors) that was marketed as a “lifetime plan” or “lifetime subscription” will receive a “lifetime subscription” that can actually last for their lifetime. If a member of the settlement class has an inactive lifetime subscription that, for instance, expired along with a device, they get the option of reactivating the lifetime subscription or claiming $100 in cash.

The settlement affects about 964,000 individuals. Their benefits are estimated to be worth $421.5 million, according to an expert for the plaintiffs.