Many of us use search engines like Google multiple times daily, and the same was true for many people 10 or more years ago. You may be owed money if you used Google between 2006 and 2013. The technology company has agreed to a $23 million settlement to resolve a user privacy class-action lawsuit. Eligible individuals can submit a claim to collect payment through July 31, 2023. Here's what you need to know about this news.
Google agrees to a $23 million settlement
A class action lawsuit alleges that Google violated users' privacy by sharing search queries with third-party websites between Oct. 26, 2006, and Sept. 30, 2013. You can file a claim if you performed a Google search and clicked on a search result during this time. Google denies any liability or wrongdoing, but has agreed to make payments to claimants who file.
You may wonder how much money you can expect to receive. Since millions of users are expected to be eligible for compensation, payments will likely be small. Current estimates suggest that each claimant could be owed approximately $7.70. However, the payment amount could change as more users submit claims.
While this amount of cash won't significantly impact your checking account balance, filing a claim is worthwhile. No matter how minimal, extra cash can be a win for your personal finances. Whether you're working to pay down credit card debt or build an emergency fund, a few extra dollars could help you reach your financial goals sooner.
How to file a claim to receive a payment
The deadline to submit a claim or exclude yourself from this class action settlement is July 31, 2023. You can file a claim if you used Google during the dates mentioned above. Below are the steps you need to take to collect the cash you're owed:
- Visit the claim website and review the details of the settlement.
- Register to receive a class member ID.
- Use the class member ID sent to you to start a claim.
- Provide the required contact information and choose your preferred payment method (bank account, Venmo, PayPal, Venmo, Zelle, or a prepaid Mastercard)
- Complete and submit the claim form by July 31, 2023.
Currently, there's no set date for when to expect payment. The final approval hearing is scheduled for Oct. 12, 2023. You can visit the claim website for updates. If you wish to receive compensation, submit a claim before the deadline passes. If you do nothing, you give up your right to compensation and won't receive a payment.
This isn't the first class action settlement of its kind
Google isn't the first technology company to be accused of violating users' privacy. Facebook allegedly allowed third parties to access private user data from 2007 to 2022. The company admits no wrongdoing, but has agreed to a $725 million settlement. Claims are still being accepted for the Facebook privacy settlement through Aug. 25, 2023.
If you were a Facebook user in the United States between May 24, 2007, and Dec. 22, 2022, you're eligible to receive payment. Staying alert to class action settlements like this is worthwhile, as it could help you boost your savings account balance.
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