September 27, 2019 Articles

The Un-Easy Street of Class Action Settlements: Strategies for Preventing and Mitigating Fraud in Claims Administration

Fraud in the claims process is a land mine for counsel on both sides of the aisle.

By Jennifer L. Mesko and Chelsea Smith

You have reached a hard-fought settlement in a class action. Congratulations! Unfortunately, the claims administration process is no easy street. What happens when you receive tens of thousands of claims in the first several days when you were estimating fewer than that for the whole claims period? Or you receive thousands of claims from the same Internet protocol (IP) address? Claims with no email addresses or signature? Claims with duplicate email or mailing addresses to another claim with a single letter or apartment number changed? All of these are indicia that your claims process may have been hijacked by a bot submitting fraudulent claims. See, e.g., Opperman v. Kong Techs., Inc., No. 3:13-cv-00453 (N.D. Cal.) (out of more than 5,400 claims submitted from the same IP address, about 1,000 claims were submitted by people who lived in one single-home residence).  

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