While the settlements the Department of Justice reached with Hachette, HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster did not call for any monetary penalties, the deal does not prevent other litigation from moving forward. To that end, Connecticut attorney general George Jepsen announced that a group of 16 states had filed their own lawsuit against Penguin, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster and Apple and had reached an agreement in principle with Hachette and Harper for the two to pay $51 million in restitution to consumers who the states said overpaid for e-books.
Under the Clayton Act, anyone injured by antitrust actions has the right to sue to recover three times the damages suffered. In the DOJ lawsuit, the federal government said the higher e-book prices had resulted in consumers overpaying for e-books by "tens of millions" of dollars.
In addition to Connecticut, the states that have filed suit are Texas, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, West Virginia, and Puerto Rico.
One of the first reactions after news of the DOJ’s actions became public was from Steve Berman of Hagens Berman the law firm that is leading the class action lawsuit against the publishers and Apple. “We’ve long held that Apple and this group of book publishers formed a cabal with the sole intent of extinguishing any competitive influences in the e-book marketplace,” Berman said in a statement. “While Attorney General Holder’s actions, if successful, will put an end to the anticompetitive actions, our class-action is designed to pry the ill-gotten profits from Apple and the publishers and return them to consumers.”