Sprint Evo & EpicA federal class action lawsuit claims Sprint Nextel cheats customers with EVO and EPIC devices by tacking on a $10 monthly “Premium Data Add-On” fee after selling them a supposedly “unlimited data” plan.

The Sprint Nextel class action lawsuit accuses the wireless carrier of over-billing millions of customers who had already subscribed to an “unlimited” data plan at a fixed monthly price by charging those customers an additional $10 per month for the same unlimited data service they had already paid for, at a contractually agreed upon price that did not include these charges.

Sprint sells dozens of these supposedly unlimited data plans, all of which are supposed to include unlimited domestic web access; unlimited domestic text, picture mail and video mail messages; and all you can stream, browse, email, chat, watch and game on the Sprint network.

Ever since Sprint introduced the HTC EVO 4G and Samsung EPIC 4G last year, however, it began charging EVO and EPIC customers who were already contractually entitled to unlimited data service under an Unlimited Data Plan a “Premium Data Add-One” fee of $10 per month in order to get “unlimited” data, just for using an EVO or EPIC device.

According to the Sprint unlimited data plan class action, this Premium Data Add-On fee is not a charge for 4G service, in not a charge for premium data content (Sprint does not provide any “premium” content in exchange for this fee), and is not defined in Sprint’s terms and conditions.

Simply put: “’Premium Data Add-On’ is a made-up term that Sprint created to attempt to disguise the fact that it was simply charging an additional fee for data services for which customers had already paid, and which Sprint was already obligated to provide, under existing contracts for Unlimited Data Plans,” the class action lawsuit states.

The Sprint Premium Data Add-On class action lawsuit is brought on behalf of a nationwide class of all consumers who were subscribed to a Sprint Unlimited Data Plan and were charged an additional “Premium Data” fee. It also seeks to represent a subclass of all class members who accounts show a California area code and billing address.

The Sprint Surcharge Class Action Lawsuit is Eric Barkwell, et al. v. Sprint Communications Company, Case No. 4:09-cv-00056-CLD, in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division

UPDATE: A class action settlement in the case was preliminarily approved in October 2013. Class Members had until March 24, 2014 to file a claim to receive a number of benefits, including a $1 cash award or one of the following: a 30-minute long distance, domestic calling card; a 30-percent discount on any accessory purchased at a Sprint-owned retail store, limited to one accessory; or waiver of the $36 activation fee when activating a new line of service under Sprint’s then-existing Terms & Conditions of Services. More info: Sprint Surcharge Class Action Lawsuit Settlement


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Please note: Top Class Actions is not a settlement administrator or law firm. Top Class Actions is a legal news source that reports on class action lawsuits, class action settlements, drug injury lawsuits and product liability lawsuits. Top Class Actions does not process claims and we cannot advise you on the status of any class action settlement claim. You must contact the settlement administrator or your attorney for any updates regarding your claim status, claim form or questions about when payments are expected to be mailed out.



  • Anonymous April 1, 2011

    Sprint Nextel Premium Data Fee Class Action Lawsuit
    just fyi they also charge that same addtl $10 fee now, to blackberry users, as they have classed them in with android phones. having just purchased a new one, and living in a 3g area only, that came as a surprise.

    • 1dublh February 21, 2014

      We were told that.the fee was required because our phones were smartphones. One was an Evo, sInce replaced.by an htc, but rusty phone of still paying that fee, as are the other four phones. . Thankfully, our contract ends in two days. Although SprInt it’s supposed tp be the number two provider in our area, half the court can’t even.use SprInt.

  • Anonymous April 19, 2011

    Sprint Nextel Premium Data Fee Class Action Lawsuit
    I purchased the EVO with Sprint, been with them for 10 plus years. They sprung a 10.00 data fee on me at the end of the sale. I refused to pay this and walked out. I called Spint and spoke with several managers. They are very careful on how they describe this fee. I was upset because it eludes to a 4G network phone and I am not in a 4G area. 1 manager told me 4G was coming in a few weeks cause he just got a email, the other manager told me he could lower the 10.00 fee to 7.50 if I went back to the store and purchase the phone. I did, but he didn’t, he has yet to call me back and I have called 3 times. They did give me a credit on my account for good faith, bottom line is 10 x 12 months = $120 more per year for the same plan I had. Makes no sense to me.

  • Anonymous May 1, 2011

    Sprint Nextel Premium Data Fee Class Action Lawsuit
    I called Sprint and complained about the $10 charge since I’m already paying for a unlimited data plan for 4 phones and they told me blah blah blah it’s because it’s a smart phone. So I called them back and told them to cancel the premium data plan, that we didn’t want it and weren’t going to use it and also said I would have no problem calling a lawyer. So they cancelled the premium data plan for that phone. I still had to spend an hour or more on the phone arguing with those idiots. We’ll see what happens with the next bill. I mean, really, how can they charge twice for a data plan.

  • Anonymous August 19, 2011

    How do I follow this lawsuit as I have the same issues with Sprint and the “premium data plan” ? Please let me know.

  • Anonymous September 16, 2011

    I have a Pocket PC smartphone with unlimited data on an old plan but I can’t upgrade because they say I don’t have a data plan… the way Sprint screws it’s customers it’s no wonder they’re having problems, this has got to be illegal.

  • Anonymous October 5, 2011

    I just got off the phone with sprint reps who REFUSED to provide me any written documentation of what the Premium Data Fee is, what its parameters and limitations are, how it is subject to change, etc. This seems HIGHLY illegal. When I asked if this was ethical to charge me unknowingly as a customer (the person who sold me the evo never told me about the monthly charge) they read the almighty “policy change clause”. I said I wanted something delivered to me by PDF or on their website that specifically listed “PREMIUM DATA FEE” and explained it. They said they had nothing of the sort. I said “you’re charging me 10 bucks per month per phone for something I can’t even look up on your website or anywhere? you’re deliberately withholding information from me”. I asked to speak to a manager, no manager was provided. I would like to participate in this lawsuit to the extent that I have been denied freedom of information as a consumer

  • Anonymous October 17, 2011

    I have a moment with sprint and I just realized they are charging me the extra ten for my service. I cant believe they can charge you an extra $10 with out telling you. this is crap and I would like to get more info on this lawsuit. if anyone know anything please let me know.

  • Anonymous October 19, 2011

    I was told the extra $10/month was for 4g service, which would come a few months into my contract. It’s been well over a year, and we still do not have 4g available in my area of New Mexico. I definitely want in on a CA suit.

  • Anonymous November 4, 2011

    I would like to know more about this lawsuit. I just got off the phone with them and after escalating the issue of the $10 premium data fee on two phones up to the third person, she came on the phone with no introduction and said, “we can’t help you, thanks for calling sprint.” What kind of business is this? I was very happy with their customer service until recently. Now I’m ready for heads to roll.

  • Anonymous November 5, 2011

    Wrong is wrong. In Nov. 2010 I bought three HTC EVOs. My congenial salesperson told me that the 3G version, with unlimited data, etc., would cost $130 ($70 + $30 + $30). But, he said, within two months 4G would be available, and that would cost $10 more per phone. Great, I said, I’ll update to 4G when it’s available. Can’t do, he claimed, because you need a 4G chip, which will cost $10/mos./phone; you must make the decision now. Made sense, so I did, for $160/mos.

    Now, I have spent an extra $360 for 4G service which I haven’t received and, judging from the financial stress Sprint is experiencing, I will pay an additional $360 before the contract is over. I have been screwed many times, but in almost every case the screwer has met with a horrible end, bankruptcy being the least horrible. Sprint and the willing employees who are flim-flamming customers will likely end up in a horrible situation, essentially of their own doing.

  • Anonymous December 30, 2011

    How do I find out more about this lawsuit??

    I’m an Evo user on Sprint and have had the same issue with the $10 fees just like everyone else. I am in an area that will likely never have 4G service (rural) but each time I called to speak to sprint about it they claimed that it would be coming ‘soon’ and therefore I have been required to pay for it… Now I’ve been paying the additional charges for over a year and I have NEVER been able to use a 4G network, over 90% of the time I am within WiFi range and don’t even use the 3G data network! Let’s get together and make this right, lets make them pay us back!

  • Anonymous May 27, 2012

    we have three phones in my family and I have to have smart phones due to the nature of my business. I have been told time and time again that 4G is coming soon and that the $10/month/line fee is to expand their 4G service. Somehow I think that some fat cats are only getting fatter rather than deliver on their promise to their consumers. I bought the Evo 2 years ago with a promise that 4G would be coming soon! That was two years ago!!! I pay an extra $360/year for what again?

  • Anonymous October 24, 2012

    I actually have a confirmation of my purchase (generated by Sprint) saying “$0.00 premium add-on data fee / month” and Sprint will STILL not honor that promise. It’s in WRITING, folks – and they still won’t honor it. How do I learn more about this lawsuit?

  • Anonymous November 17, 2012

    I have a Samsung galaxy s3 andI’m being charged for prrmium data. I was told when I purchased the phone that the fee was for lte service whuch I don’t have. I have sub par 3g and my area is not even listed on sprints list of cities to get lte. I would like to be party to this suit.

  • Regina January 7, 2013

    I never knew about this lawsuit. Sprint representatives could never explain the “Premium Data” fee to me. I was charged this fee on top of the $29.99 unlimited data plan for my Epic 4G. And now they are stating that the “unlimited” Data plan is now capped @ 5gigs of data and if I want more I need to change my plan. They no longer offer the unlimited data plan and if I switch, I cannot go back to the original plan. Also… I live in a 3G only area.

  • RMC February 6, 2013

    When I inquired 2-yrs ago, the Sprint Rep said it’s in case you go over the limit. I told her that I had an unlimited plan. She said there’s a 4G “CAP” and this fee is to cover those who go over the 4G “CAP” everyone has a 4G “CAP” on data. I asked her if I could just get a 3G phone to aovid the FEE, she said., all phones will be 4G so you have to pay the premium.

  • Fedup Aaron February 28, 2013

    There needs to be a lawsuit against Sprint misleading its customers about this crappy data connection. I can’t even stream music and videos (netflix, youtube, etc) without being connected to a WiFi hotspot. Sprint keeps blaming the indiviual phones and denies it’s their network. I have 2 iPhone 4s’s and an Evo 4G and they all have same issue with Sprints “Premium” data plan. Should be called Sprint Dial-Up connection. My plan began at $89.99/mo. after all their add-on fees over the years, i’m now paying $210/mo for 3 lines and it keeps increasing. I’m so pissed off and have spent countless hours on the phone and in-store. I WANT LEGAL ACTION! I will be contacting an attorney.

  • RMC April 16, 2013

    Any idea of the status regarding the Sprint Nextel Premium Data Fee Class Action Lawsuit?
    Where can a copy be printed?

  • Jim H February 21, 2014

    Sprint told us the same lie they seem to be handing everyone else, about how 4g would be here soon (It has been more than two years and It isn’t here). They also said smartphones were required to party the fee, bit they couldn’t eexplain what we were getting for that fee or how what we were getting was “premium” as opposed to regular days. Not could they say how our Everything.Data plan didn’t already include this. I have contemplated going bback.to Verizon, even though the monthly is a little higher. At least they.didn’t blatantly rip me off. And, I had a more consistent.and stronger phone signal.

  • Ron Nagim April 20, 2014

    I was told the same thing that a smart phone needed the data service and that it would not work without it. THat is a lies, SPRINT cutoff my data just yesterday and it still is not on and my phone works just fine. Texts, Calls so SPRINT LiED to get extra illegal cost from Consumers, my phone also was blocked for several hours as well a couple of days ago with full bars. That is unreal and disappointing that they would do such at sprint… this activity is not allowed as to my contract.

    • Ron Nagim April 20, 2014

      IO want in a CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT like crazy… the abuse has gone way over and above with SPRINT.

  • Brandon D May 1, 2014

    Here is the new proposed settlement on the sprint site for this law suit.

  • Top Class Actions May 5, 2014

    UPDATE: A class action settlement in the case was preliminarily approved in October 2013. Class Members had until March 24, 2014 to file a claim to receive a number of benefits, including a $1 cash award or one of the following: a 30-minute long distance, domestic calling card; a 30-percent discount on any accessory purchased at a Sprint-owned retail store, limited to one accessory; or waiver of the $36 activation fee when activating a new line of service under Sprint’s then-existing Terms & Conditions of Services. More info: http://topclassactions.com/lawsuit-settlements/lawsuit-news/16479-plaintiffs-want-sprint-surcharge-class-action-settlement-approved/

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