Staples pays $8.9M to settle dispute with Delaware

Office supplier Staples pays $8.9 million to settle abandoned property dispute with Delaware

Associated Press

DOVER, Del. (AP) -- Office supplier Staples Inc. is paying $8.9 million to settle an abandoned property dispute with the state of Delaware.

Officials announced the settlement in June but said terms were confidential. They released details of the agreement only recently after The Associated Press challenged the secrecy. A final payment from Staples is due Monday.

The company sued the state two years ago, challenging Delaware's method of calculating liability for abandoned property, or escheat. The lawsuit was filed almost a decade after Staples said in a voluntary disclosure that it owed about $137,000 in past due escheat payments.

Abandoned property can include stocks and bonds, uncashed checks, and, in Staples' case, unclaimed customer rebates. A Chancery Court judge earlier this year rejected Staples' argument that rebates should not be considered abandoned property.

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