Redbox charges late fees

Redbox News

Redbox Facing Late-Fee Class Action Suit

October 26, 2009, 2:45 pm

Embattled DVD vendor Redbox has already fought plenty of legal fires this year, but now the company has a consumer class action on its hands. Laurie Piechur, of St. Clair, Ill., accuses the company of routinely charging fees to consumers who return videos late, despite the company's claim that it never charges late fees of any kind.

Piechur's suit lists several instances in which she was charged a fee for returning videos after 9 P.M., the required return time. On at least two occasions – one of which fittingly involved the movie "Fool's Gold" -- Piechur was charged the ominous-sounding $25 "maximum fee." That fee is only imposed on consumers who return a DVD after the end of the "maximum rental period," which varies from disc to disc. Those subject to the fee are allowed to permanently keep the DVD, however.

The plaintiffs contend that a surprising amount of money is at issue in the case. Piechur's attorneys say that between January 2002 and now – the period covered by the complaint – Redbox has collected around $100 million in "illegal and punitive" late fees.

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