July 14, 2024

RICHMOND, VA (CVILLE RIGHT NOW) – Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares has once again stepped into the sports arena and this time the focus is not on NIL its on the NFL The Commonwealth of Virginia has been looking into the financial practices of the Washington Commanders and the AG announced a settlement with the team in regard to overcharging fans for ticket fees.

The full release from the office of the Attorney General is below and stay tuned to WINA for when Jason Miyares will make his next monthly appearance to discuss this and other consumer protection initiatives.

RICHMOND, VA – Attorney General Jason Miyares today announced an agreement with Pro-Football LLC, the current owner of the Washington Commanders, ensuring the return of hundreds of thousands of dollars to consumers impacted by the team’s failure to return ticket deposits to season ticket holders.

On April 25, 2022, the Attorney General opened an investigation into the Washington Commanders’ practice of retaining security deposits.

As a result of that investigation, over $600,000 in deposits have been returned to approximately 475 season ticket holders to date. Additionally, the team has agreed to pay $700,000 in penalties and costs to resolve this investigation.

The Attorney General’s investigation revealed that since at least 1997, the Washington Commanders had entered long-term contracts with season ticket holders, requiring some to pay refundable security deposits.

Despite contractual obligations to return these deposits within thirty days of contract expiration, the Commanders unlawfully retained significant sums of security deposits, often imposing additional conditions on consumers seeking refunds.

In 2014, the team sent approximately 650 form letters to former season ticket holders with unrefunded security deposits on file, representing that it would remit unclaimed funds to state unclaimed property offices. Despite that commitment, the team failed to remit a single unclaimed security deposit to a state unclaimed property office, including to the Virginia Department of the Treasury, until at least 2023.

Washington Commanders
The settlement contains the following terms to protect consumers:

The Washington Commanders will comply with the Virginia Consumer Protection Act to ensure future protections in consumer transactions;
The  will undertake efforts to refund all remaining security deposits on dormant accounts (former season ticket holders) to consumers or remit them to state unclaimed property departments in a manner consistent with state law;
For all security deposits presently on file that pertain to active accounts, the Washington Commanders agree to refund all such security deposits within thirty (30) days of the expiration of the contract, and also to send yearly reminders to consumers to remind them of their existing security deposits;
The Washington Commanders agree to pay the Commonwealth $600,000 in civil penalties;
The Washington Commanders agree to reimburse the Virginia Office of the Attorney General $100,000 for its attorneys’ fees and costs expended in investigating and bringing this action.
The settlement, in the form of an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance, has been filed for approval with the Loudoun County Circuit Court.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *