The state sued Microsoft in 2004 on behalf of governmental purchasers and as parens patriae for its citizens claiming the company monopolized the market for software and caused customers to pay more for software than they would have if there had been competition. Microsoft agreed to pay Mississippi $40 million. Up to $60 million in hardware/software vouchers will be provided to consumers, businesses, all county/local/municipal government entities, public schools and public school districts. Depending on how many vouchers go unclaimed, Mississippi could get an addition $8 million. All Mississippi residents, businesses, county/local governments or schools that purchased Microsoft products or computers containing Microsoft products between January 1, 1996 and June 2009 were eligible to receive a voucher of $12 or $5 (depending on which products were purchased). The vouchers could be used towards the purchase of any software or hardware product (not just Microsoft).
U.S. Department of Justice and the Plaintiff States alleged that the Defendant, Microsoft Corporation violated State and Federal law by maintaining a monopoly in the market for Intel-compatible personal computer operating systems and by illegally tying its Windows operating system to its Internet Explorer browser.
The State filed a lawsuit against Microsoft Corporation seeking damages caused to the State and its consumers because of Microsoft’s unlawful monopolization in the computer operating system market. In June of 2003, the State reached a settlement with Microsoft Corporation along with a separate class of private plaintiffs.