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Nationwide Settlement Reached in Trans Union Consumer Privacy Class Action

May 28, 2008

Zelle Hofmann represents plaintiffs in this class action against Trans Union LLC alleging violation of federal privacy protection statutes in the sale of consumers’ personal and financial information.  Trans Union is one of the largest credit reporting agencies in the country.  The settlement was preliminarily approved by a federal court in Chicago on May 28, 2008, after nearly ten years of hard-fought litigation.  The settlement class includes all consumers who had an open credit account or an open line of credit from a credit grantor (including, for instance automobile loans, bank credit cards, department store credit cards, other retail store credit cards, finance company loans, mortgage loans, and student loans) located in the United States anytime from January 1, 1987 to May 28, 2008.  Under the settlement, class members are entitled to six or nine months of Trans Union's credit monitoring, credit score and other credit-related services, and a possible cash payment.

The six months of credit monitoring services (which retails for $59.75) includes (1) the ability to lock your credit report so third parties, such as lenders or other companies, will not be able to access your credit report without your consent (unless allowed by law); (2) unlimited daily access to your Trans Union credit report and credit score; and (3) credit monitoring with a 24-hour email credit notification service. The nine months of enhanced credit monitoring services (which retails for $115.50) includes all the services listed above, plus a suite of insurance scores and a mortgage simulator service.  There is no limit on the number of class members who may apply for and receive these services.

Trans Union is also required to pay $75 million into a Settlement Fund, which represents disgorgement of all Trans Union’s relevant, realized profits, and which will be used to donate $150,000 to non-profit organizations; to pay for settlements or judgments for damage claims related to lawsuits brought individually by Class members against Trans Union, if any; to pay class counsels’ attorneys’ fees and their expenses; and to pay the costs of notice and administering the settlement.  Any Settlement Fund money remaining after deducting the costs for the above items will be distributed either to class members who register for a possible payment or to non-profit organizations as determined by the court.  No amount of the $75 million will revert to Trans Union.

Zelle Hofmann attorney Chris Micheletti, said  “We are gratified that we were able to negotiate such a beneficial settlement package for the class members after so many years of hard fought litigation and given the significant and challenging legal issues presented by the case.” 

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