The Federal Trade Commission levied a record $520 million fine Earlier this week against Epic Games, creator of the extremely popular game Fortnite. Of this, $245 million is slated to go to customers whom the FTC said were tricked into purchases they didn’t intend to make.
The FTC called the practice “dark patterns,” or manipulative user interfaces which make it easy to spend money unintentionally. Some users lost money even on loading screens or while booting the game up.
Could you be eligible to get your money back? The FTC has set up a website to help you find out
Who is eligible for a Fortnite refund from the FTC?
‘Fortnite’ developer Epic Games will have to pay the FTC’s biggest fine ever
Basically there are three main categories of eligibility. According to the FTC, refunds will be made available to:
Parents whose children made an unauthorized credit card purchase in the Epic Games Store between January 2017 and November 2018
Fortnite players who were charged in-game currency (V-Bucks) for unwanted in-game items (such as cosmetics, llamas, or battle passes) between January 2017 and September 2022
Fortnite players whose accounts were locked between January 2017 and September 2022 after disputing unauthorized charges with their credit card companies.
How do I get a refund from Epic Games?
The FTC reports that if you believe you’re eligible for a payment, you don’t need to do anything right now.
“When we have more information about the refund program, we will post updates (on the website) and send email notices to customers who paid for in-game purchases,” the website posted.
The commission added that refund seekers should be careful and watch out for those who may scam you as you seek a refund, saying the FTC never asks you to pay to file a claim or get a refund.
NPR said it may be difficult to identify who has been affected by issues with Fortnite. “The process is a little bit complicated because we are dealing with a user base of 400 million players,” FTC attorney James Doty told NPR.
What is Epic Games doing to improve its system?
According to a statement, Epic Games said it would agree to the settlement and that it made mistakes, but laid the blame partly on obsolete laws.
The company has improved its payment and refund systems, Epic wrote, eliminating saving payment information by default in favor of “an explicit yes or no choice to save payment information.”
In addition, to eliminate confusion when pushing a button over purchases, Epic wrote it has added a “hold-to-purchase mechanic that re-confirms a player’s intent to buy.”