America Online Inc is still feeling the shockwaves of its boom in subscribers and the subsequent traffic jam since it announced a flat rate pricing plan in December (CI No 3087). The day after AOL settled a nationally certified class action suit in Illinois, a lawsuit in Texas was given class-action status. On Thursday, AOL announced the preliminary settlement in Illinois which extended partial refunds to customers who had trouble logging on in February and March. Originally, refunds were only available for December and January. The judge in the Texas suit ruled AOL violated the state’s Deceptive Trade Practices Act by offering users unlimited access, although many couldn’t access the service at all. Meanwhile, the New York Times reports that many AOL users are now being hit with huge bills for logging on via a 1-800 number during the crunch, without realizing they would be charged 10 cents per minute for doing so. AOL says claims by shocked and angy users will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.