CHARLESTON - State Attorney General is one of 34 attorneys general who recently agreed to a settlement with YP Corp., an Internet advertising company charged with deceptive practices.
McGraw filed the settlement Dec. 14 in Kanawha Circuit Court. Chris Hedges is handling the case.
The 34 states will collectively be paid $2 million for restitution to YP's victims, McGraw says.
The states alleged that since 2003, YP.com has been sending businesses and other organizations "live" activation checks in the mail for a small amount, usually around $3.50.
When the business cashed this check, the fine print on the back provided that it was agreeing to pay for advertising on YP.com in its on-line yellow pages directory and that YP Corp. was entitled to collect a monthly fee that usually ranged from $27.50-$39.95, McGraw says.
He adds that the fee was sometimes charged to the organization's phone bill, and that others had their bank accounts charged.
"In some of these cases, the check recipient remained unaware that it was being billed by YP.com for several months, if not years, after depositing the check," a release says.
YP Corp. also agreed to contact its current customers and make them aware of the situation and their potential for at least a partial refund.
Judge James Stucky has been assigned the settlement.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-2645