DRAM Class Action Settlement = Cash For You

If you purchased a computer, console or any type of hardware or component with DRAM in it between 1998 and 2002, you’re entitled to some cold hard cash.

After typing that, I feel like one of those awful personal injury lawyers with commercials.

The facts are the facts, though, and thanks to a $310 million settlement in an ongoing price fixing class action suit against DRAM manufacturers, there’s a strong possibility that you, reader of this gaming website, paid too much for any number of your electronics.

What happened? In 2002 the US Department of Justice accused a group of 12 different DRAM manufacturers, including Samsung, Micron, and Toshiba, of price fixing their memory from 1998 through 2002. In court documents, the DOJ went so far as to label the manufacturers “one of the largest cartels ever discovered.” The manufacturers wound up pleading guilty and paid fines in excess of $730 million.

In 2007, State Attorneys General from across the nation (32 of them in all) filed their own class action lawsuit on behalf of consumers, and the DRAM manufacturers have finally agreed to the combined $310 million settlement. Now it’s time to distribute that money to you, consumer electronics buyer.

You’re eligible for a minimum payment of $10 if you meet the following requirements:

  • Purchased DRAM or a device containing DRAM;
  • Purchase was made anytime from January 1, 1998 to December 31, 2002;
  • Purchase was made in the United States or from a seller located in the United States; and,
  • Purchase was not made directly from a DRAM manufacturer, but from a reseller such as a computer maker (Apple, HP or Dell), a retailer (Best Buy, Staples or Costco) or any other reseller (CDW, Ingram Micro or Amazon.com).

You can get all the details in this FAQ about the case and settlement, and submit your claim right now online (deadline is August 1). You don’t need any receipts for your purchases to submit your claim, but you may have to provide proof of purchase at a later date. I went through the process and it was quick and painless.

Fittingly, I’ll probably purchase some more RAM for my PC with my payout.

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8 Comments on DRAM Class Action Settlement = Cash For You


On March 7, 2014 at 8:19 am

How the hell exactly are we supposed to still have proof of purchase of computers and RAM that are at least ten years obsolete? Civil law is a frigging joke and a half.


On March 7, 2014 at 8:23 am

But wait, if more than 5 million people sign up for the settlement, we get nothing…it all goes to charity…


On March 7, 2014 at 9:17 am

Oddly, I do have proof of purchase still from at least one purchase. I just logged into my newegg account and looked up my order history, and right there in the listing for my 2001 purchases is a Video Card containing DDR (covered by this suit) Along with just about every other component for building a computer. For some reason I’m not seeing actual ram in my order… I think I ordered it from some one else because it was cheaper. A lot of online retailers maintain order history forever.


On March 7, 2014 at 10:12 am

Chances are, this was a lawsuit going on for a while. When companies have the money to throw around like these companies do, they can delay a civil case forever, resulting in this sort of thing right now. You know the expression, “We’ll keep you in court for so long…” This is what it’s referring to. They now know that most of the money that they’re going to pay out is likely not going to go back to the customers, due to the fact that most customers aren’t going to have proofs of purchase going that far back, especially since computer technology has gotten so cheap and advanced over the years that most people don’t keep their computers for more than five years (two or three in some instances).

On the topic of online retailers keeping your purchase records, sure, if they’re there, use them. Just keep in mind that many people that purchased a computer during that period were likely making a physical purchase from a store rather than an online retailer.


On March 8, 2014 at 10:09 am

Oh good, now we’ll have the already whiny gamers crying because they’re not getting paid to play games lolol.


On March 9, 2014 at 12:37 am



On March 10, 2014 at 12:21 am

Just say you bought a bunch of from compusa. lol