Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has settled a three-year-old lawsuit against TicketCity involving undelivered Beijing Olympics tickets.
The settlement calls for the company — the nation’s eighth-largest secondary ticket seller according to TicketNews’ exclusive industry rankings — to pay 200 percent refunds to an undisclosed number of customers who bought Olympics Opening Ceremonies tickets but never received them. In addition, if customers incurred travel expenses to China as a result of expecting tickets may also be entitled to restitution for those expenditures.
Despite the settlement, TicketCity is not admitting to any wrongdoing, and the company is not being forced to pay any additional penalties or fines. TicketCity customers who purchased tickets to other, unrelated events, but did not receive them, may also be entitled to similar refunds as a result of the settlement, according to Abbott.
“We are glad to put this three-year-old matter behind us,” Zach Anderson, the company’s chief operating officer, told TicketNews in a statement today, June 20. “We appreciate the efforts of the Attorney General and his staff who worked with us to reach this settlement. We remain committed to our mission of providing our customers with outstanding service.”
The Beijing Olympics was a difficult one for several ticket brokers and their customers as problems arose with undelivered tickets and separate ticketing scams were reported in the UK and other countries.
“Although it guaranteed tickets to advance purchasers, the defendant did not actually possess tickets to the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games,” Abbott said in a statement. “As a result, in March 2008, TicketCity informed customers they would not actually receive the tickets they were ‘guaranteed’ under the defendant’s pre-purchase offer. Further, TicketCity refused to honor the 200 percent refunds that customers were promised in the defendant’s online advertisements.”
The secondary ticketing trade group the National Association of Ticket Brokers (NATB) requires its members to offer 200 percent refunds for undelivered orders, and while TicketCity is not listed among the NATB’s members, it is one of several brokers that try to adhere to the same policy.
To help facilitate the refunds, TicketCity must post a notice on its Web site for 120 days that customers may be entitled to receive funds.
“We are pleased to have reached a settlement and thankful that none of our clients were adversely affected by it,” Anderson added. “We look forward to continuing our focus on providing great service to our loyal clients, as we have been for the past 21 years.”