What Happens to Unclaimed Class Action Money?

Class action lawsuits are a type of civil suit that is brought to court by one or more people who act on the behalf of a larger group of people. These are cases where many people have a case but separate lawsuits would become a time consuming endeavor. Often class action lawsuits will occur when many people have been injured or wronged by a particular product or company.

Since most class actions are filed in federal court, settlement payments to victims will not show up in a State Unclaimed Property Division or the Department of Revenue search and, unlike most other unclaimed money, there is usually a time limit by which the settlement must be claimed before it expires. If you’ve moved, hold stock in street name and switch brokers, or physically hold stock certificates, you may not be notified of any class action suits so check those companies you maintain shares in regularly.

An ever growing source of unclaimed funds is created by class action law suits within a wide range of industries, products and services. Several hundred companies are involved in class action law suits are coming before court of law each year. These fall into several categories including: security fraud, consumer protection, public health, antitrust, human rights, environment, and product liability. Recent settlements have exceeded $11 billion; however, fifty percent of those who could collect payments fail to make a claim. Even if the product is no longer on the market or the stock has been sold to another business, class action suit members may be eligible to receive cash, credits, shares or distributions in companies.

What happens if a person doesn’t claim the money from a class action settlement? If you used a faulty or defective product years ago you may still be able to receive cash, credit, or shares as a class member, from hundreds of major companies. You may need to hire a company specializing in tracking unclaimed assets you may be eligible for, for a fee. The Consumer Advocacy Center has been working with charities to make sure that even though money isn’t collected for a class action suit that the “wrong doers” don’t keep the money. These charitable donations are called Cy Press awards.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 25th, 2015 at 11:49 am and is filed under Class Action Information, Legal. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

2 Responses to “What Happens to Unclaimed Class Action Money?”

  1. larry g clinton Says:

    In Dec. of 08, I underwent a partial knee replacement using the Biomet/Oxford knee replacement. Ive been in tremendous pain for years, have not been able to work and have lost insurance a long time ago. have accquried in upwards of 70.k in med. bills and now fall daily. I need assistance in order to clime the 3 stairs to enter my front door. @ the rate im going Ill be in a wheelchair within 6 months. Im only 48 yrs. old and used to work in the R.V. factories many years now Im so weak I cannot even stand up for long. What can I do to get some help ?

  2. Lynn Wright Says:

    I was part of Engle trust fund and can’t get a hold of my trustee.please contact me at 321-978-5064.thank you

 

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