Walmart may owe you $500 thanks to this terrible scam

Cat3 / Culture

Walmart Corporate from Bentonville, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Walmart is one of the iconic brands in America.

But they got caught in some shady dealings.

And Walmart may owe you $500 thanks to this terrible scam.

Walmart settles class action lawsuit

Anyone who bought weighted groceries at Walmart between October 19, 2018, and January 19, 2024, has until June 5 to make a claim to the $45 million class action lawsuit settlement Walmart agreed to.

A lawsuit alleged that “Walmart uses unfair and deceptive business practices to deceivingly, misleadingly, and unjustly pilfer, to Walmart’s financial benefit, its customers’ hard-earned grocery dollars.”

The lawsuit listed four ways Walmart deceived customers on prices.

The first is that the chain “falsely inflates the product weight” and that it “mislabels the weight of bagged product.”

Next, Walmart altered “the total amount charged at the Point of Sale is greater than the advertised unit price multiplied by the weight of the product.”

Finally, the lawsuit alleged the price of goods “is materially less than the unit price charged to consumers at the register.”

Settlement terms

A website announcing the settlement described the types of products that Walmart boosted the price of without telling customers.

“A Settlement was reached in a class action that alleged that persons who purchased at Walmart Stores certain sold-by-weight meat, poultry, pork, and seafood products (referred to as ‘Weighted Goods’) and certain organic oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and navel oranges sold in bulk in mesh or plastic bags (referred to as ‘Bagged Citrus’) paid more than the lowest in-store advertised price for those products,” the website read.

The website also described what terms customers had to meet to be eligible for the maximum $500 payout.

“If you’re approved and have receipts, proof of purchase, or other documentation that substantiates (a) each Weighted Good and/or Bagged Citrus Purchased in-person in a Walmart Store during the Settlement Class Period, and (b) the amount paid for each Weighted Good and/or Bagged Citrus Purchased, then that Approved Claimant will be entitled to receive 2% of the total cost of the substantiated Weighted Goods and Bagged Citrus Purchased, capped at five hundred dollars ($500),” the website added.

Anyone who didn’t meet that criteria should still get payments of $10, $15, $25, and $50 by meeting a lesser threshold.

Walmart tried to put the best public spin on this massive defeat.

“We will continue providing our customers everyday low prices to help them save money on the products they want and need. We still deny the allegations, however we believe a settlement is in the best interest of both parties,” a statement from Walmart to CNBC read.

Chains like Walmart exist based on the trust built with a loyal customer base.

No one thinks Walmart is actually going anywhere.

But being forced to admit in court that you deceived your customers isn’t a good look for any business.