Frequently Asked Questions
  1. Why did I receive a claim form in the mail?
  2. What is this lawsuit about?
  3. Why is this a class action?
  4. Why is there a settlement?
  5. What do "Western Union Transaction", "Escheat", and "Abandoned Property" mean?
  6. How do I know if I am part of the settlement?
  7. What does the settlement provide?
  8. How can I submit a claim for a payment from the Settlement Fund?
  9. Can I file a Claim Form by email, fax, or electronically?
  10. When will I get my Claim Form?
  11. When is the claim filing deadline?
  12. When will I get the Abandoned Property Recovery Instructions?
  13. When will I get my money back?
  14. Why did it take so long for me to get my money back?
  15. Will I have a chance to correct any errors or omissions on my Claim Form?
  16. What do I have to provide if I want to file a Claim Form on behalf of a deceased claimant?
  1. Who is administering the settlement?
  2. How do I exclude myself from the settlement?
  3. If I didn't exclude myself, can I sue Western Union later?
  4. If I excluded myself, can I get anything from this settlement?
  5. Do I have a lawyer in this case?
  6. How will the lawyers be paid?
  7. How do I tell the Court if I do not like the Settlement?
  8. What’s the difference between objecting and excluding?
  9. When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the settlement?
  10. Do I have to come to the hearing?
  11. May I speak at the hearing?
  12. What happens if I do nothing at all?
  13. What is the effect of final settlement approval?
  14. How do I get more information?
  15. Has final approval been granted?

BASIC INFORMATION

  1. Why did I receive a claim form in the mail?

    If you received a claim form in the mail, it was because Western Union’s records indicate you are part of the class. You should submit your claim form to claim your compensation.

    This website explains the lawsuit, the settlement, your legal rights, what Settlement Benefits are available, who is eligible for them, and how to get them. The Court in charge of the case is the United States District Court for the District of Colorado, and the case is known as Tennille v. The Western Union Co., Case No. 09-cv-00938-JLK. The people who sued are called Plaintiffs, and the companies they sued, Western Union, are called Defendants.

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  2. What is this lawsuit about?

    The lawsuit claimed that Western Union did not timely notify its customers that their Western Union Transactions were not redeemed by the receivers to whom the Western Union Transactions were sent, and as a result caused harm to their customers. Western Union denied it did anything wrong, and the Court did not rule on whether Western Union violated any laws.

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  3. Why is this a class action?

    In a class action lawsuit, one or more people, called “Class Representatives” (in this case, James P. Tennille, Robert Smet, Adelaida DeLeon, and Yamilet Rodriguez) sue on behalf of people who have similar claims. These people together are called a “Class”. If the Court allows the case to proceed as a class action, the Court will resolve the issues for all Class members, except for those who exclude themselves from the Class. U.S. District Judge John L. Kane is in charge of this class action.

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  4. Why is there a settlement?

    The Court has not decided in favor of either side in the case. The settlement was reached after mediation before a neutral mediator, David W. Aemmer, Chief Circuit Mediator, United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. Western Union denies all allegations of wrongdoing or liability against it, and contends that its conduct was lawful. Western Union is settling to avoid the expense, inconvenience, and inherent risk of litigation, as well as the related disruption of its business operations. Class Counsel believes that the terms of the settlement are fair, adequate, and reasonable to the Class because the settlement provides an appropriate recovery now while avoiding the risk, expense, and delay of pursuing the case through trial and any appeals.

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  5. What do "Western Union Transaction", "Escheat", and "Abandoned Property" mean?

    A “Western Union Transaction” means a consumer-to-consumer, consumer-to-business, or business-to-consumer money transfer transaction initiated using Western Union’s services, including Dinero En Minutos, Envio Plus, Equity Accelerator, Mexico Giro Paisano, Money in Minutes, Money Transfer, Next Day, Quick Cash, Quick Collect, Quick Pay, Speedpay, and Swiftpay.

    “Abandoned Property” is money or property that has been unclaimed, and was given over to the state according to certain state statutes.

    “Escheat” means the process where unclaimed or abandoned property is given over to a state according to certain state statutes.

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WHO IS IN THE SETTLEMENT

To see if you will be affected by the settlement or if you can get a payment from it, you first have to determine if you are a Class member.

  1. How do I know if I am part of the settlement?

    Unless you excluded yourself, you are included in the settlement as long as you are a member of the Class. Judge Kane decided that everyone who fits this description is a Class member:

    All persons (a) who initiated any Western Union Transaction in the United States on or after January 1, 2001 and on or before January 3, 2013, whose Western Union Transaction was not redeemed within 60 calendar days; and (b) who either (i) have not claimed their money transfer funds (nor had that money claimed on their behalf) from Western Union; or (ii) were informed by written communication that their money was about to escheat to the state, district, territory, or U.S. jurisdiction in which their money transfers were initiated, and who sought and received a refund of their money but did not receive a payment for interest Western Union earned on that money. Again, a “Western Union Transaction” means a consumer-to-consumer, consumer-to-business, or business-to-consumer money transfer transaction initiated using Western Union’s services, including Dinero En Minutos, Envio Plus, Equity Accelerator, Mexico Giro Paisano, Money in Minutes, Money Transfer, Next Day, Quick Cash, Quick Collect, Quick Pay, Speedpay, and Swiftpay.

    If you were sent a notice in the mail, Western Union’s records indicate you may have transferred money between January 1, 2001 and January 3, 2013 and that money was not redeemed within 60 days. If you fall within the description of the previous paragraph, then you are part of the settlement and your rights will be affected, unless you actively exclude yourself.

    Excluded from membership in the Class are the following: (1) Western Union and its affiliates, and officers and employees of Western Union and its affiliates; (2) persons who timely and validly exclude themselves from the Class; (3) state and federal governmental entities; and (4) the judge to whom this case is assigned and any member of the judge’s immediate family.

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THE SETTLEMENT BENEFITS – WHAT YOU GET

  1. What does the settlement provide?

    Class members who submit valid claims will be entitled to the following “Settlement Benefits”. The benefits are also described in summary in the table below.

    1. Western Union established a Class Settlement Fund Class consisting of Class members’ money transfer funds held by Western Union on the date of Final Approval of the settlement (which is approximately $145 million). An Initial Settlement Fund has already been established by Western Union to pay the Administrator’s costs prior to the Settlement Effective Date, as defined below.
    2. Upon submission of a valid claim, Class members (a) whose funds have not yet escheated to any state, territory, district, or U.S. jurisdiction as of January 3, 2013; and (b) who did not receive a prior refund of their money transfer funds from Western Union, will be entitled to receive lump sum cash refunds from the Class Settlement Fund in an amount equal to their unclaimed funds, less administrative fees and charges as specified in their contracts, plus interest earned by Western Union while the funds were held by Western Union. Class members whose funds escheat after January 3, 2013, but before any appeals are resolved, will only be entitled to receive a lump sum cash payment of interest earned on those funds while those funds were held by Western Union, paid out of an account held by Western Union instead of the Class Settlement Fund.
    3. Upon submission of a valid claim, Class members whose funds have escheated to any state, territory, district, or U.S. jurisdiction as of January 3, 2013 will be entitled to a lump sum cash payment equal to the amount of interest that Western Union earned on their unclaimed money transfer funds while those funds were held by Western Union, paid out of an account held by Western Union instead of the Class Settlement Fund. These Class members are also entitled to recover their escheated money from the appropriate state, territory, district, or U.S. jurisdiction. Escheat Recovery Forms and Instructions will be mailed to the Class members after the Settlement Effective Date.
    4. Upon submission of a valid claim, Class members who were informed by written communication that their money was about to escheat, and who sought and received a prior refund of their money transfer funds from Western Union, but did not receive a payment for interest Western Union earned on that money, will be entitled to receive a lump sum cash refund paid out of the Class Settlement Fund for interest earned on their funds while the funds were held by Western Union.
    5. When not contrary to a request from any law enforcement agency or prohibited by law, court order, or other legal process, WUFSI will change its policies and practices to affirmatively notify its customers who send money transfers, except for Quick Collect money transfers paid to receivers via checks, that those transfers have not been redeemed within 60 calendar days. For Quick Collect money transfers paid to receivers via checks, WUFSI will, within 90 calendar days after such checks become void due to non-redemption, notify its customers that their money transfers have not been redeemed. Western Union already provides notifications to customers using certain of its money transfer services, so Western Union is not obligated to change its policies and practices with respect to those money transfer services where such notification is already provided within 60 days.

    Once Western Union implements the notification procedure provided for above, it will have no obligation to refund any interest to its customers. If there is not sufficient money in the Class Settlement Fund to pay in full all valid claims, then valid claims will be paid pro rata (meaning all payments would be reduced proportionately).

    In addition, Western Union will pay for the Administrator’s necessary tasks that must be performed before the Settlement Effective Date out of the Initial Settlement Fund. If Judge Kane approves the settlement, Western Union will be reimbursed from the Class Settlement Fund for those costs. All other administrative costs will be paid out of the Class Settlement Fund. Subject to Court approval, an incentive award of $7,500 to each Class Representative and attorneys’ fees and expenses will also be paid out of the Class Settlement Fund.

    SETTLEMENT BENEFITS SUMMARY TABLE
    Your Money Has Not Been Determined to be Abandoned Property & You Have Not Already Received a Refund

    Receive a refund of your money transfer funds from the Class Settlement Fund, in an amount equal to your unclaimed funds minus administrative fees and charges, as specified in your contract.

    Receive a refund from the Class Settlement Fund of the interest earned on your funds while they were held by Western Union.

    Your Money Has Become Abandoned Property

    Receive a refund of the interest earned on your funds while they were held by Western Union out of an account held by Western Union.

    Receive Escheat Recovery Instructions on how to recover your escheated money from the appropriate state, territory, district, or U.S. jurisdiction.

    You Were Informed Your Money Was About to Become Abandoned Property and You Already Received A Refund Receive a refund from the Class Settlement Fund of the interest earned on your funds while they were held by Western Union.
    Future Money Transfer Fund Transactions Western Union will notify their customers if their money transfers have not been redeemed within 60 days.

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HOW YOU GET A PAYMENT — SUBMITTING A CLAIM FORM

  1. How can I submit a claim for a payment from the Settlement Fund?

    Class members who wish to receive a payment must submit a claim form. Claim forms began to mail out in March of 2016. The claim forms must be postmarked by October 11, 2016.

    You can also be able to (a) download a claim form here (b) call the Administrator at 1-877-316-3151 to request a claim form, or (c) write to the Administrator to request a claim form at info@MoneyTransferSettlement.com or the following address:

    Tennille v. Western Union Settlement Administrator
    PO Box 3058
    Portland, OR 97208-3058

    After you receive your claim form, read the instructions carefully, fill out the form, include any requested documentation, sign the declaration, and mail the form postmarked to the Administrator at the address noted above no later than the date specified on the claim form.

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  2. Can I file a Claim Form by email, fax or electronically?

    No. We can accept your Claim Form via mail only. We do not accept claim forms by phone, online, by email or by fax.

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  3. When will I get my Claim Form?

    Claim forms began mailing out in March 2016. The claim forms must be postmarked by October 11, 2016.

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  4. When is the claim filing deadline?

    Claims must be mailed in with a postmark dated no later than October 11, 2016.

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  5. When will I get the Abandoned Property Recovery Instructions?

    If you received a notice, and you are entitled to receive them, the Abandoned Property Recovery Instructions were included with your claim package. The claim packages began mailing out in March of 2016. You must seek a return of your money/abandoned property directly from the state(s) to which the money previously was sent.

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  6. When will I get my money back?

    Class members will begin receiving the Settlement Benefits approximately 4 months after October 11, 2016 (the claim filing deadline).

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  7. Why did it take so long for me to get my money back?

    First, the Court held a Fairness Hearing, where the Court considered whether the proposed settlement was fair, reasonable, and adequate. Then the Court decided whether to approve the settlement. There were several appeals of the Court’s final approval of the settlement, which were just recently resolved. Now that the Settlement is effective, Epiq began mailing claim forms to Class members in March 2016. Epiq will issue checks to Class members for valid claims around January 2017. This process takes time, so please be patient.

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  8. Will I have a chance to correct any errors or omissions on my Claim Form?

    You may correct any errors or omissions on your Claim Form as long as you submit your complete Claim Form postmarked by the deadline of October 11, 2016.

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  9. What do I have to provide if I want to file a Claim Form on behalf of a deceased claimant?

    If you are the legal representative authorized to deal with the deceased’s affairs in this matter, you should submit any proof of your authority to act on behalf of the Class member, along with the completed claim form.

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  10. Who is administering the settlement?

    The Settlement Administrator is Epiq Systems, Inc., a legal services firm retained to provide information and assistance to callers who may be Class members or interested parties. Epiq is a neutral third party and has no affiliation with Western Union.

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EXCLUDING YOURSELF FROM THE SETTLEMENT

If you don’t want to participate in the settlement and you want to keep all of your rights to sue Western Union about the claims being resolved by the settlement, then you must take steps to get out of the Class. This is called asking to be excluded from, or is sometimes called “Opting Out” of, the Class.

  1. How do I exclude myself from the settlement?

    The deadline to exclude yourself from this settlement has passed.

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  2. If I didn't exclude myself, can I sue Western Union later?

    No. If you are a Class member and you did not exclude yourself, you will be deemed a member of the Class participating in the settlement and give up your right to sue Western Union for the claims that this settlement resolves, whether or not you file a claim form. If you have a pending lawsuit against Western Union, other than this class action, you should have already spoken to your lawyer in that lawsuit. You must have excluded yourself from this Class to continue your own lawsuit.

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  3. If I excluded myself, can I get anything from this settlement?

    No. If you excluded yourself from the settlement, you will not be able to make a claim to receive any payment under the settlement, and you cannot object to the proposed settlement. If you exclude yourself, however, you may sue Western Union, in the future. You will not be bound by anything that happens in this lawsuit.

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THE LAWYERS REPRESENTING YOU

  1. Do I have a lawyer in this case?

    The Court has appointed Richard J. Burke, and Jamie E. Weiss of Complex Litigation Group LLC (n/k/a Quantum Legal LLC); Jonathan Shub (now with Kohn, Swift & Graf) of Seeger Weiss LLP; Seth A. Katz of Burg, Simpson, Eldredge, Hersh & Jardine, PC; Jim S. Calton, Jr. of Calton Legal Services; and James E. Cecchi of Carella, Byrne, Cecchi, Olstein, Brody & Agnello P.C. as legal counsel for the Class. Together, the lawyers are called “Class Counsel.” The law firm of Complex Litigation Group LLC (n/k/a Quantum Legal LLC) has been appointed Lead Class Counsel.

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  2. How will the lawyers be paid?

    The Court has approved Class Counsel’s request for attorneys’ fees and awarded Class Counsel 30% of the Class Settlement Fund, to be paid out of the Class Settlement Fund.

    Class members may obtain a copy of the attorneys’ fees request by e-mailing the Administrator at the address in response to Question 8, or by writing to Lead Class Counsel. In addition, the attorneys’ fee request will be posted here. Class members are not personally responsible to any of Class Counsel for attorneys’ fees or expenses.

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OBJECTING TO THE SETTLEMENT

  1. How do I tell the Court if I do not like the Settlement?

    The deadline to file an objection has passed.

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  2. What’s the difference between objecting and excluding?

    Objecting is simply telling the Court you don’t like something about the settlement. You can object only if you stay in the Class. Excluding yourself is telling the Court you don’t want to be part of the Class. If you exclude yourself, you have no basis to object because the case no longer affects you.

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THE COURT’S FAIRNESS HEARING

The Court held a hearing to decide whether to approve the settlement and granted its approval. You may attend and you may ask to speak, but you don’t have to attend or speak at the hearing.

  1. When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the settlement?

    The Court held a Fairness Hearing at 1:30 pm on June 24, 2013 at the United States District Court for the District of Colorado located at Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse, 901 19th Street, Denver, CO 80294, in Courtroom A802.

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  2. Do I have to come to the hearing?

    The hearing was held.

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  3. May I speak at the hearing?

    The deadline to request to speak at the hearing has passed.

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IF YOU DO NOTHING

  1. What happens if I do nothing at all?

    In order to receive any of the cash benefits from the settlement, you must file a valid claim form. If you do nothing, you will get no cash Settlement Benefits from this settlement. But unless you exclude yourself, you won’t be able to start a lawsuit, continue with a lawsuit, or be part of any other lawsuit against Western Union about the legal issues in this case ever again.

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FINAL SETTLEMENT APPROVAL

  1. What is the effect of final settlement approval?

    Class members who submit a valid claim form will receive the Settlement Benefits to which they are entitled. All Class members who did not actively exclude themselves, regardless of whether they filed a valid claim form or not, also released all claims they have against Western Union including the right to sue Western Union or the Released Parties (identified in Section 10.B of the Settlement Agreement) regarding all of the claims resolved by the Settlement, as described more fully in Section 10 of the Settlement Agreement.

    However, you did NOT give up your right to sue Western Union or any of the Released Parties for any other claims (that is, any claims that were not resolved by the Settlement).

    The full text of the Settlement Agreement is available here. The Settlement Agreement describes the Released Claims and the Released Parties with specific descriptions in legal terminology, so read it carefully. If you have any questions about the Released Claims and what they mean, you can talk to the law firms representing the Class, listed in Question 23 above, for free; or you can, at your own expense, talk to your own lawyer.

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GETTING MORE INFORMATION

  1. How do I get more information?

    The website summarizes the settlement. More details about the settlement are in the Settlement Agreement. You can get a copy of the Settlement Agreement here. You also may write with questions to Tennille v. Western Union Settlement Administrator, PO Box 3058, Portland, OR 97208-3058 or send an email to info@MoneyTransferSettlement.com. You can also look at and copy the legal documents in the case, Civil Action Number 09-cv-00938-JLK, during regular business hours at the Clerk’s Office, United States District Court for the District of Colorado, Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse, Room A105, 901 19th Street, Denver, CO 80294. After March 25, 2016 (if one is not sent to you) you can get a claim form here, or have a claim form mailed to you by calling 1-877-316-3151. The claim form must be postmarked by October 11, 2016.

    Do not call the Court or any Judge’s office to get more information about the settlement.

    Address changes: Please submit the address change in writing via mail or email. Your request should be sent to:

    Tennille v. Western Union Settlement Administrator
    PO Box 3058
    Portland, OR 97208-3058

    or

    info@MoneyTransferSettlement.com

    Please include your name, prior address and current address.

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FINAL APPROVAL

  1. Has final approval been granted?

    Yes, the Court granted Final Approval on June 25, 2013. Appeals were resolved in January of 2016. The Settlement Effective Date is January 12, 2016.

Questions? Contact the Settlement Administrator at 1-877-316-3151.