Groupon Class Action Settlement: Use Your Expired Groupons

Update: There is now an official website at grouponvouchersettlement.com. The court hasn’t approved an official settlement breakdown yet, the claim form is available to submit by e-mail.

What, Groupon already has a class action settlement? Yup. Bloomberg reports that Groupon has agreed to pay $8.5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit alleging the expiration dates on its coupons are illegal. Part of the lawsuit alleged that Groupon should be treated like gift cards, which in many states are not allowed to expire. However, like with most settlements, Groupon denies that and doesn’t admit any fault, yada, yada.

Customers who bought Groupon vouchers before Dec. 1, 2011 can either redeem these past their expiration date or, if they are unable to do so, obtain a refund from the $8.5 million fund, according the proposed settlement filed March 29 in federal court in San Diego. Residents in some states can seek refunds only for vouchers sold after Aug. 22, 2010, according to the filing.

So resurrect those expired and forgotten Groupons!

I’ve personally never really had a problem with expiration dates, because the only reason I’d wait is if the service is too hard to book or if I don’t want the service. In that case, I’d just send a online message invoking the Groupon Promise of “If the experience using your Groupon ever lets you down, we’ll make it right or return your purchase. Simple as that.” I just ask for a refund, and have never been denied or even questioned.

Also, as a rule all Groupons never fall below the value of the purchase price, even after expiration. So if you buy a $30 Groupon for $15 at Bob’s BBQ Shack, it will still be worth $15 there even after expiration.

Don’t forget that you can save even more on your Groupons with cashback shopping sites like eBates ($10 new customer bonus), Mr. Rebates ($5 bonus), and BigCrumbs.

Comments

  1. I’ve soured on Groupon after having a couple of them expire worthless. As a consequence I totally de-subscribed from their e-mails. The one case that really rubbed me the wrong way was when I bought a groupon for a dozen cupcakes from a local vendor. I procrastinated until the final week before expiration, and must not have been the only one to do so because every time I called to place my order (which by the terms of the deal had to be 24 hours in advance) I got a busy signal. I suspect they were either overloaded with procrastinating grouponers like myself. Or the cynical side of me thinks they may have taken the phone off the hook that final week to prevent all the procrastinators from being able to redeem in that final week. Either way, I lost out, didn’t think to go back to Groupon for a refund, and just stopped Grouponing altogether.

  2. Thanks for the post. I know I had 1-2 that expired especially when I bought for out of town and never made it there. I take it Groupon will not proactively tell me which those are?????! I had noticed the change to the non-expire listing on the Groupons and figured it was competition from Living Social that did that.

    I have also soured on Groupon/LS etc. When it was ONE great deal a day, fine. Now its cluttered and getting some marginal businesses. When I hear businesses rail on these sites for not bringing in repeat customers, it tells me their business model/service was not very compelling. I have repeated at full retail for those places that are worth it.

  3. Captain Cheapo says:

    You can check which coupons you have that expired on their website pretty easily. I just checked and noticed that I have three that claims to have expired that were obviously not called in by the merchant from which I used them at. I see that I can now get the original purchase value out of them, which I wasn’t aware of. Do you all think it would be unethical, for example, to take my expired (but used) Old Navy groupon to Old Navy to get an additional $10 from them? I thought $10 for $20 was a good deal. Now I can get $10 for $30.

  4. Newlyfrugal says:

    Captain Cheapo, I would not do what you suggest. Your conscience was right: it is unethical and you will be hurting the business. Even if you tried to recycle a used groupon, the retailer will know when they scan the bar code. You won’t get credit for it.

  5. I bought a Groupon for a snowshoeing thing and the facility was closed the whole season and when I asked for my money back, Groupon rep asked for my number saying that they needed it before being able to give a refund. I am never buying another Groupon. I am still waiting for my refund; why should I have to provide additional personal info?

  6. Cashback through Shop Discover is 10%.

  7. Lots of merchants sign up for Groupon and are simply not ready for the rush of new customers. They really need to add common-sense limits. I’ve had that happen a lot, either the lines are out the door or appointments are booked for months. I guess I’m just used to it and online message for a refund if that happens and always get it within 24 hours.

    Right now I’ve basically whittled down to just Groupon and LivingSocial, I figure most new local stores will just go to them, most of the deals on the copycat sites are rather sad.

  8. I was just printing out my old expired Groupons. I had about 4 or 5 that I can still go get stuff for the amount I paid.

  9. I had 2 Groupons expire on me, due to my own fault. I asked for a refund, but was turned down with an explanation that I can still get credit for the cost of the Groupon. Oh well. Didn’t hurt to ask.

  10. Stephen P says:

    Daniel, did you mention the class action lawsuit?

  11. I was turned down as well. Not sure who gets the $8.5mil settlement part….. Forgot if I mentioned the lawsuit in my first request, but I sure did on my response to them and on the “How would you rate the support you received” questionnaire!

  12. I didnt even get a refund after I mentioned the lawsuit. They wrote back:

    “We’ve reached an agreement to settle the class action lawsuits with the affected parties, but it has to be approved by the court before it is complete. If the court approves the settlement, all consumers who are impacted by the settlement will receive email notices from a court-approved administrator explaining what to do, providing a number to call to determine eligibility for settlement and to ask questions.

    We are unable to make any comment or provide any further information as this legal action is still pending.

    Regards,

    Ashley B
    Groupon Customer Support “

  13. I found the claim form and tons of other class action lawsuit settlement awards at http://www.mysettlementclaims.com.

  14. Caliphman says:

    I called customer support about getting a refund for three coupons of almost a hundred dollars each face which I bought for $50 off and which had expired. Here in California, it is illegal to sell gift coupons or certificates with expiration dates and these expired in six months. Burt, the rep, would not respond except to say check the settlement vouchers website or phone number without explaining who they were and what it was al about. I did check and the settlement relieves Groupon from any legal liability of refunding any expired coupon except through the settlement fund. What is insidious about it is unless you specifically write a letter to the settlement administrator, you are lumped with the class and you can only recover from the merchant to the extent of what you paid for the coupon, assuming the merchant is still around and there is money left from the $8.5 million settlement fund. No wonder Groupon customer support is instructed to point calls on refund for expired coupons to the settlement website. So much for their 100% customer satisfaction refund guaranty Groupon brags about!

  15. Even without the settlement you can always use your expired coupons for the amount that you paid. That has always been their policy.

  16. I called about a cleaning groupon to ask for a refund before it expired because the cleaning place never answered the phone and they told me they wouldn’t refund it but would work with me to schedule it or some bs. So the groupon promise is bs.

  17. I agree – my past experience is that you can’t rely on Groupon to back up the “Groupon Promise”. They are very slippery about refunds. I will be cancelling my membership.

  18. I am done using Groupon. Tried at two different businesses to use my expired Groupon. Both places refused past the expiration date. I contacted Groupon and was referred to their settlement site. I live in Indiana which does not appear to be included in the settlement. Guess I am just screwed all around. I have unsubscribed from Groupon and plan to tell everyone to avoid them. We are only talking about a total of $30 but it is the principal. They have horrible customer service and DO NOT care at all about their customers! They do not back what they say!

  19. I have been having the worst experience trying to get a $40 refund for a groupon I had the worst time trying to redeem. I tried emailing the company, calling the company, even using the groupon and was unable to get a response or a confirmation for booking a 2 hour cruise over two months. What makes the whole experience worse, is ALI V., a groupon customer service rep. ALI is insistent I try again to book and use the groupon again. ALI is insistent I give it as a gift! What does Ali think I would want to or have my friends and family members endure this customer experience of just booking with the company! I can only imagine what it would be like on the cruise. I asked ALI Twice to talk to a supervisor and still my request goes to no avail. WHAT HAPPEN TO THE GROUPON PROMISE THEY PROMOTE!

    Luv2excel 9/21/12 3:33PM

  20. I, also have experienced dissatisfactions with Groupon and their Customer Service. They keep refering me to the class action suit which is now past the date of completion, thus I don’t think I can submit my request at this time? I emailed Groupon Customer Service no less than 5-6 times and got the run-around with the classaction suite website to fill out their forms. Has anyone every completed those forms for other class action suites ? It takes much time and little comes of it – perhaps 1/10 of what one has lost – the rest goes to the lawyers!! I’ve seen this happen several times already and don’t think it’s worth you time, unless of course you’ve got nothing else to do – a retirement exercise or? Sorry to say, I would not recommend anybody to participate in their program any longer.

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