Update: The FTC has updated their page saying that people won’t get anywhere close to $125 for having their own credit monitoring and that they strongly recommend that you select the 4 years of free credit monitoring. Will you switch from a cash settlement to credit monitoring?
“The public response to the settlement has been overwhelming. Millions of people have visited this site in just the first week. Because the total amount available for these alternative payments is $31 million, each person who takes the money option is going to get a very small amount. Nowhere near the $125 they could have gotten if there hadn’t been such an enormous number of claims filed.
The free credit monitoring provides a much better value, and everyone whose information was exposed can take advantage of it. If your information was exposed in the data breach, and you file a valid claim before the deadline, you are guaranteed at least four years of free monitoring at all three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) and $1,000,000 of identity theft insurance, among other benefits. The market value of this product is hundreds of dollars per year.
You can still choose the cash option on the claim form, but you will be disappointed with the amount you receive and you won’t get the free credit monitoring.
The settlement administrator will be sending an email to people who already submitted a claim for the alternative cash payment. In that email, you will have the option to:
1) provide additional information OR 2) switch to free credit monitoring.
You also can send an email to info@EquifaxBreachSettlement.com to make a change to your claim.”
There is now a settlement that you can opt into.
- You can check here to see if you’re eligible to file for a settlement from Equifax.
- If you are eligible you can then file a claim here.
- You can read the FAQs here.
Here is what you can claim:
- $125 cash if you have credit monitoring as of the date of your claim, as long as you plan on keeping it active for 6 months. Chase Credit Journey is free and monitors your credit file, so signing up before filing is a no-brainer. Just note that the credit score it provides isn’t your real FICO score.
- Alternatively you can signup for 4 years of free credit monitoring from Equifax in lieu of a cash payment.
- An additional cash payment for time spent.
- You can claim reimbursement at $25/hour for up to 10 hours spent in response to the data breach by providing a description of how you spent that time. That includes reading about the data breach and how it happened, learning about the 3 credit reporting agencies and how they determine who is creditworthy, learning how to protect yourself from unauthorized use of your credit, learning about the consequences of identity theft, learning how to freeze your credit reports, checking to see if you were a victim, checking to see for anomalies on your credit report, etc. You must certify that your description is truthful. If you have your own credit monitoring and spent 10 hours in response to the data breach you are eligible for $375 in reimbursement.
- To claim more than 10 hours and up to 20 hours, you also must provide documentation of fraud, identity theft, or other alleged misuse of your personal information fairly traceable to the Data Breach.
- A 25% rebate for the cost of identity monitoring paid for between 9/7/16-9/7/17.
- If you have out of pocket loses or attorney fees due to identity theft from the data breach you can claim these as well.
Of course if too many people opt in then there won’t be enough money and everyone’s payment will be reduced proportionally.
Will you file to opt into the settlement payment?