Matthew Pagoaga, et al., v. Stephens Institute d/b/a Academy of Art University

Case No. CGC 16-551952

7. How will the Settlement compensate me for identity theft and fraud I have already suffered or expenses I have already paid to protect myself?


Pre-Deadline Settlement Benefit: Reimbursement for Out-of-Pocket Losses

If you spent money to address fraud or identity theft that you believe was fairly traceable to the E-mail Security Incident, or to protect yourself from future harm, then you may make a documented claim for reimbursement up to $1,000 per individual for out-of-pocket losses not including the purchase of professional services and also for (ii) $2,500 per individual for out-of-pocket losses consisting only of the purchase of professional services, including accountant and attorneys’ fees. Recovery under subsections (i) and (ii) are subject to an aggregate cap of $2,500 per individual. Examples of expenses that may be fairly traceable to the E-mail Security Incident and eligible for reimbursement are provided in the bullet points below.

The maximum amount payable to reimburse class members with documented Out-of-Pocket Losses is $250,000. If the number of claims exceeds that amount, payments will be reduced and distributed on a proportional basis.

Post-Deadline Settlement Benefit: Reimbursement for Out-of-Pocket Losses

If the maximum amount payable is not reached, and you spent money to address fraud or identity theft that you believe was fairly traceable to the E-mail Security Incident after June 16, 2018 (the “Claims Deadline”), then you can still submit a documented claim for reimbursement by March 14, 2020 as long as the following conditions are met: (a) you submitted a claim electing to receive Credit Monitoring Services offered as part of this settlement prior to the Claims Deadline; and (b) you provide an attestation that you have not obtained reimbursement for the claimed expense through other means.

Claims for out-of-pocket losses incurred after the Claims Deadline will be approved on a first-come first-served basis. Once $250,000 is exhausted, no more claims for Out-Of-Pocket Losses will be paid. To fill out and submit a claim form after the Claims Deadline, you can access and submit a post-deadline Claim Form online at the Settlement Administrator’s website, or request a hard copy of the post-deadline Claim Form from the Settlement Administrator that can be filled out and return by mail (see FAQ 11).

Out-of-Pocket Losses that are eligible for reimbursement through the Settlement include the following costs incurred after April 2016, if they have not already been reimbursed by AAU or any other organization:

  • The costs of credit monitoring or identity protection services you obtained (up to the date on which Credit Monitoring Services become available through this Settlement);
  • Unreimbursed losses, fees, or charges incurred as a result of identity fraud or theft connected with the possible misuse of your Social Security Number, date of birth, address, income and/or employment information;
  • Professional fees and other costs incurred addressing identity fraud or theft, including falsified tax returns or other identity fraud or theft connected with the possible misuse of your Social Security number, date of birth, address, income and/or employment information;
  • Costs associated with placing credit freezes or fraud alerts with the credit reporting agencies; and
  • Miscellaneous expenses such as notary, fax, postage, copying, mileage, and long-distance charges that you show were incurred in connection with fraud or identity theft connected with the possible misuse of your Social Security number, date of birth, address, income and/or employment information.

“Self-prepared” documents such as handwritten receipts are, by themselves, insufficient to receive reimbursement, but they can be considered to add clarity or support other submitted documentation. This list provides examples only, and other losses or costs fairly traceable to the E-mail Security Incident may also be eligible for reimbursement. YOU MUST BE ABLE TO DOCUMENT YOUR CLAIM.

The Settlement Administrator has the sole authority to determine the validity of claims for Out-of-Pocket Losses. Only valid claims will be paid. The deadline to file an Out-of-Pocket Losses Claim will be two years after the Settlement goes into effect.

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