A CLOSER LOOK: Equifax data breach victims entitled to various settlement benefits

A Closer Look

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA) — Equifax data breach victims will soon be able to submit their claims as part of a class action settlement for the largest data breach in the nation’s history.

A coalition of 50 attorney generals representing 48 states, the District of Columbia and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico reached a settlement with Equifax, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced on Monday.

The coalition secured a settlement with Equifax that includes a Consumer Restitution Fund of up to $425 million, a $175 million payment to the states and injunctive relief, which also includes a significant financial commitment.

However, Equifax data breach victims cannot submit their claims until the federal court grants preliminary approval of the proposed class action settlement. An Equifax representative said once the settlement is determined and approved, victims can go to www.equifaxbreachsettlement.com for information on how to submit a claim.

Once preliminary approval is granted, the website will list class action lawsuit member criteria and enable those who meet the criteria to file a claim for benefits.

The website currently summarizes the various benefits data breach victims can receive.

The benefits include free credit monitoring, cash payments and free identity restoration services.

Data breach victims can receive at least four years of three-bureau credit monitoring through Experian, and also up to 6 more years of free one-bureau credit monitoring through Equifax.

However, you may be eligible for a $125 cash payment if you already have credit monitoring services that will continue for at least six months.

Other cash payments up to $20,000 are also available. How much cash victims receive is based on the following three criteria:

  • The time you spent remedying fraud, identity theft or other misuse of your personal information caused by the data breach, or purchasing credit monitoring or freezing credit reports, up to 20 total hours at $25 per hour.
  • Out-of-pocket losses resulting from the data breach.
  • Up to 25% of the cost of Equifax credit or identity monitoring products you paid for in the year before the data breach announcement.

Victims can also receive at least seven years of free assisted identity restoration services to help remedy the effects of identity theft and fraud.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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