Deadline to file claim from Western Union scam extended to May

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JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) — The deadline for filing claims for money lost in a Western Union scam has been extended to  May 31, 2018.

According to the Attorney General’s office, Mississippians may be eligible to receive compensation if they were a victim of a fraud-induced transfer using Western Union between January 1, 2004, and January 19, 2017.

A typical fraud transfer in this case would include a scammer getting their victims to wire them money by making the victim believe it was for a lottery, family emergency, online dating, and other tactics.

Compensation will come from a $586 million fund administered by the Department of Justice’s Victim Asset Recovery Program.

This fund is related to a multi-state settlement with Attorney General Jim Hood and 49 other states, the District of Columbia, and Western Union.

Those individuals and any Mississippians who reported to Western Union or another government agency that they had been the victim of a scam using Western Union will be sent a claim form in the mail.

The claim form will be sent from the settlement administrator, Gilardi & Co. The form will contain instructions explaining how consumers may file their claim to receive compensation.

However, if you did not previously file a complaint, you may still be eligible to submit a claim directly to Western Union. If you believe you may have an eligible claim, please visit their website  or call 1-844-319-2124 for more information on how to file a claim.

Filing a claim is free. No one associated with the claims process will ever call to ask for consumers’ bank account or credit card number.

“For years, Western Union allowed scammers to use its money transfer system to get payments from victims, even though they received hundreds of thousands of complaints about money transfers that were induced by fraud and deceit,” said General Hood. “Because they chose to ignore the problem instead of implementing policies and procedures to better protect consumers, they are now having to reimburse consumers for these loses.”

All completed claims forms must be mailed back to the settlement administrator by the deadline. The Attorney General’s Office encourages Mississippians to reach out to our Consumer Protection Division if they have questions or concerns at 1-800-281-4418 or aginfo@ago.state.ms.us.

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