Questions on your money back from Western Union?

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Since we told you it’s time to ask for your money back from Western Union’s settlement with the FTC, we’ve gotten some questions about who can make a claim, when, and how it works. Here are some answers.

  • If you lost money to a scammer who had you pay using Western Union between January 1, 2004 and January 19, 2017, you can file a claim. You have until February 12, 2018, to file your claim.
  • You do not have to pay to get your money back. To file a claim, you have to give your Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) on the claim form. But nobody will call you to ask for those numbers, or for your bank account or credit card number. Anyone who does is a scammer, so tell the FTC right away.
  • If you don’t have either a Social Security number or an ITIN, check the box that says so. When asked for a reason, you can explain that you’re not a U.S. citizen – or whatever other explanation applies.
  • The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is managing the claims process through the company they hired, Gilardi & Co. Your claim will go to Gilardi, but we suggest you start at FTC.gov/WU, which will link you to the claims website.
  • If you had reported your loss to Western Union, the FTC, or another government agency earlier, you might have gotten a pre-filled claim form in the mail. But even if you didn’t, you can still file a claim.
  • To prove how much you lost, it helps to have documentation – like a receipt or transfer send form. If you don’t have those, file anyway. Give as much information as you can about your wire transfer and the money you lost, including when and why you sent it. That will help DOJ validate your claim.
  • We know it’s not that safe to send your Social Security number through the mail to someone you’ve never heard of. That’s why we suggest filing your claim online, starting at FTC.gov/WU. But if you got a claim form in the mail from Gilardi and you want to return it by mail, the only address to send it to is: United States v. The Western Union Company, PO Box 404027, Louisville, KY 40233-4027.
  • If you have power of attorney for someone, or you represent their estate, you can file a claim on their behalf.
  • How much money you get back depends on how many people file a claim, and how many claims DOJ can validate.
  • It might take a year for DOJ to process all the claims and send out checks.

 

Check FTC.gov/WU for updates and answers to other questions.

 

Comments

was sending money but western union cancelled the transaction and then informed me I had to wait 7 days for a refund, omg, while the money was in my bank I would earn interest on it, yeah its only a week but being in western unions bank are they earning interest. if they cancellrd why not return money straight away as it never reached the destination to where it was suposed to go to. They tell me it could be fraud ok they gave me that advise so then it was up to me as I knew it wasnt, would never use them or money gram again, they tell what to do with my money and the whole time they are holding it who are the actual scammer???

I filed a claim to the Dallas FBI internet crime unit and Western Union scam unit and haven't heard anything from either one. The claim was May 5, 2017. Was it because it was passed the dead line?

If you want to ask for money back, you have to file a new claim form connected to this settlement. You have to file the new claim form by May 31, 2018.

To start your claim, go to FTC.gov/WU. There are two buttons at the top of the FTC.gov/WU page. If no one sent you a claim form already, you can click on the orange button. Then click again, and you will be connected to the US Department of Justice claim filing website. The online claim form asks for information about the money you sent.

I made multiple transactions. Do I need to file a separate claim for each transaction or can I do one claim for the total amount?

Please go to FTC.gov/WU to connect to the U.S. Department of Justice claim filing website. Follow the directions on the DOJ website.

What if I am outside of the USA (Australia) Can I make a claim

You are not required to be a United States citizen or in the United States to file a claim. If you lost money to a scammer between January 1, 2004 and January 19, 2017 and you paid by Western Union, you can file a claim to get money back. You must file a claim by May 31, 2018. Go to FTC.gov/WU to start the process.

I know you don’t have an exact number as there are many variables, but could you please ballpark the percentage we can expect to recover? Is it 1-2% or actually significant? Don’t want to spend the time digging up documents if not.

If your claim is verified, the amount you get will depend on how much you lost and the number of people who submit valid claims.

Only the amount you transferred via Western Union is eligible for a refund. Other expenses like Western Union fees, other losses, or transfers sent through other businesses are not eligible for a refund.

I was wondering when our claims will be paid, I was scammed by a lot more than what the letter said, but anything would help at this point being on disability, unfortunately I do not have the receipts anymore, I filed my claim as soon as I got the letter online, thank you.

It may take up to a year to process and verify people’s claims and determine who is eligible to get a payment. We will publish more information when we have it.

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