Consumers warned about cost of using third-party agent in filing claims for $63M LCD settlement

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- The Washington Attorney General's Office said Friday that it will soon launch a website for consumers to file claims for their share of a $63 million LCD recovery settlement.

At the same time, the office said it wanted to caution consumers that a third-party agent called the Financial Recovery Services, or FRS,  has set up a website to file claims on behalf of consumers, but will charge one-third of the recovery money to do so.

Consumers can file their claims for free on the attorney general's office special website, once it's launched.

From 1998–2006, the office said, consumers in Washington and elsewhere were significantly overcharged every time they bought a product with a liquid crystal display, or LCD, screen because of a conspiracy by the world’s largest LCD manufacturers. For some products, this scheme may have increased the price consumers paid by as much as 20 percent.

In May 2015, the attorney general's office recovered more than $63 million from the nine LCD manufacturers, whose price-fixing conspiracy drove up prices consumers paid on items like TVs, laptops and cell phones. The bulk of the money recovered will be returned to consumers who purchased products containing LCDs, the office said.

The manufacturers include: