Microsoft will pay as much as $89 million to settle a class-action lawsuit in North Carolina that alleged the vendor over-charged for its software.

Under the settlement, North Carolina residents who bought Microsoft Windows, Office or stand-alone Word or Excel products between December 9, 1995, and December 31, 2002, can apply for vouchers that may be used to buy desktop or notebook computers, software or select peripherals from any manufacturer, Microsoft said.

The maximum value of the vouchers issued will total about $89 million, Microsoft said. One-half of any unclaimed vouchers will be donated to North Carolina schools, the Redmond, Washington, vendor said.

Class-action lawsuits remain in Arizona, Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico and Wisconsin. Suits in 17 other states have been dismissed or had class-action certification denied. Thirteen of these dismissals are final, Microsoft said last week.

The total cost to Microsoft of all class-action lawsuits settled so far is about $1.55 billion.