Preliminary approval of class action settlement for Experian data breach exceeds $47M

Remember Experian’s massive data breach of 15 million customers in 2015?  The resulting consolidated class action is nearly resolved.  On December 3, 2018, a California federal judge granted preliminary approval to a proposed class settlement valued at over $47 Million.

Forty lawsuits against Experian were consolidated in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.  The class members, all T-Mobile USA customers, may have had their names, addresses, Social Security numbers, birth dates and passport numbers compromised in the breach.

Strictly speaking, this is no longer a FCRA case. In December 2016, the court granted in part Experian’s motion to dismiss, agreeing with Experian that it did not furnish a consumer report in violation of the FCRA because “[t]heft victims don’t ‘provide’ a thief with stolen goods.”

The settlement includes a $ 22 million nonreversionary settlement fund, which will be used to provide two years of credit-monitoring and insurance services to class members who submit valid claims, cash payments for out-of-pocket costs and documented time spent due to the data breach, $2,500 service awards for each class representative, as well as attorneys’ fees and costs, not to exceed $10.5 million.  In addition, $11.7 million must be set aside for remedial and enhanced security measures at Experian.

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