Final Approval Given to Faneuil Data Breach Lawsuit Settlement
by Brian Eckert
A federal court has granted final approval to a settlement between Faneuil, Inc. and class members whose personal information was compromised in a 2021 data breach. Milberg class action attorneys filed the Faneuil data breach lawsuit and acted as class counsel in the case, which provides expense reimbursement, statutory damages, and other benefits.
Why Was the Lawsuit Filed?
Pagan, et al. v. Faneuil, Inc. is a data breach class action lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. It stems from a ransomware attack against business outsourcing solutions provider Faneuil that was discovered in August 2021.
David K. Lietz has filed more than 100 data breach lawsuits since 2020, been named class counsel in dozens of data breach class actions, and won millions of dollars for data breach victims.
The attack resulted in a data breach that affected the Personally Identifiable Information (PII) of past and present Faneuil employees, including their names, addresses, email addresses, and Social Security numbers. In response to the cybersecurity incident, three plaintiffs filed a class action lawsuit against Faneuil. Milberg Partner David K. Lietz is one of the attorneys who represented the class.
Who Can Participate in the Faneuil Data Breach Lawsuit?
In February 2022, Faneuil sent a data breach notice to all individuals affected by the data breach. The notice looked like this.
Approximately 53,476 people, including 8,534 California residents, received a notice from Faneuil. Based on this, two classes were established:
- A nationwide class consisting of all persons whose PII was maintained on Faneuil’s system compromised in the data breach, and who received a data breach notice; and
- A California subclass composed of all persons residing in California whose PII was maintained on Faneuil’s system compromised in the data breach, and who received a data breach notice.
Anyone meeting one or both of these class definitions was automatically included as a class member in the lawsuit.
What Does the Settlement Provide?
The Faneuil data breach lawsuit settlement provides the following benefits to class members:
- Reimbursement for documented out of pocket expenses that resulted from the data breach, up to $500. Covered expenses include bank fees, card reissuance fees, overdraft fees, late fees, credit reports, identity theft insurance products, and bank or credit card company charges.
- Reimbursement for time spent dealing with the data breach, up to $500.
- Reimbursement for “extraordinary losses” such as fraud or identity theft losses, up to $5,000.
- Identity theft protection through Financial Shield for a period of 24 months.
- A $50 cash payment to California subclass members.
To receive these benefits, class members must have submitted a claim by February 1, 2023. Class members also had the option to “opt out” of the settlement. Class members who opted out receive no settlement benefits, but retain the right to independently sue Faneuil over the claims raised in the lawsuit.
When Did the Court Approve the Settlement?
The court granted preliminary settlement approval in October 2022. Preliminary approval initiated the period for settlement notices to be sent to class members, giving members time to review the terms, make a claim, opt-out, or object.
In addition, the preliminary settlement set a date of February 16, 2023 for a final fairness hearing. At the hearing, the court decided whether the settlement should be finally approved as “fair, reasonable, and adequate.”
A final approval order filed on February 17 stated that the settlement agreement reached by the parties is “in the best interests of the Settlement Class, and therefore approved.” All class members who did not opt out were bound by the final approval order.
Why Was Milberg Chosen to Represent the Class?
A primary benefit of class action lawsuits is they allow class members to share litigation costs that, if borne by a single individual, would often exceed the amount of any verdict or settlement. When a class action lawsuit gains court approval, the court appoints what is known as “class counsel.” These lawyers represent all class members and do not charge class members for their services.
In Pagan, et al. v. Faneuil, Inc. the court appointed David K. Lietz of Milberg to serve as class counsel. By law, the court must consider several factors when appointing class counsel, including their experience in handling class actions, their knowledge of the applicable law, and the resources they can commit to representing the class.
Milberg attorneys have the knowledge, experience, resources, and track record needed to take on big companies like Faneuil, and are consistently named as class counsel in lawsuits that provide real benefits to members. Mr. Lietz has filed more than 100 data breach lawsuits since 2020, been named class counsel in dozens of data breach class actions, and won millions of dollars for data breach victims.
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