Florida intervened in the Davis v. Southern Bell action, seeking injunctive relief and civil penalties, alleging that Southern Bell Telephone Company (Southern Bell) monopolized inside wire maintenance and other optional service markets and overcharged subscribers; that Southern Bell’s marketing for certain optional services contained misrepresentations, that Southern Bell billed certain customers for optional inside wire maintenance plans and other optional services which customers did not know they had or did not know were optional.
In order to settle the dispute on behalf of the class and the State of Florida, the parties entered a settlement agreement. As part of the agreement, Southern Bell agreed to provide affected customers with credit toward optional services or offered a reduction in the cost of their existing service plans. These credits ultimately totaled over $5 million. Additionally, Southern Bell agreed to pay $4,863,335 in damages. Of the settlement proceeds, $905,554 was distributed to pay the state?s investigative costs and attorney?s fees.