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$153 million in Western Union refunds

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Refund checks worth about $153 million are going out to over 109,000 people who sent money to scammers through Western Union wire transfers. The $153 million is a portion of the money Western Union paid when it reached settlements with the FTC and Department of Justice and agreed to create a strong, anti-fraud program. Western Union also admitted to criminal violations in its settlement with the Department of Justice.

The first refunds are going to people who signed and returned a pre-filled claim form and agreed with the dollar amount stated on the form. The refund administrator, Gilardi & Co., is verifying claims that need additional information. Other people who filed claims will get refunds later this year.

The refund checks will come from “United States v. The Western Union Company.” If you’re in the US, you have to cash or deposit the check within 90 days. If you got a check but don’t agree with the amount, you can cash the check and contact Gilardi & Co. For more information about refunds, contact Gilardi & Co. at 844-319-2124 and go to Learn more from the FTC at Western Union Refunds.


Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit


How long will it take to do this Remission ? It was supposed to be 120 days, I feel cheated. Maybe 5000 dollars is not much, but I could use this money now in this difficult time.I am so angry.

My mother was defrauded to a total of $136,000. We got $42,000 back from the suit against Money Gram and are awaiting the rest of the refund. I am proud of our government for doing what they can to stop these horrible scams involving our elderly. Fortunately, my mother saved a copy of every single send and receive receipt. We had contacted the FBI and they had also retained copies of everything. I wish she was still here to see this. Thank You!

Love your letter, same for my Mother She just received her check . Thank you to all involved

Well here we are in September and still nothing. 6 months later and no answers. Maybe this will be a nice xmas for us still waiting with no answers!!

I was defrauded of more than 175,000. Unfortunatly, not all of that was via Western Union, and not sure if I had all of the receipts of the Western Union Sendings. The way things seem to be going with this Western Union thing, I am seriously beginning to t;hint that some of us perhaps many of us will never see one single cent refunded to us. This waiting period of time with nothing seen moving makes me think that something is wrong......very seriously wrong with the system.

I 100% agree that there is something definitely wrong with the system and that system is DOJ and FTC the money is in there hands so they have the power to control and we are powerless even to get an honest answer or any answer from either DOJ or FTC. Yes I don't think we'll see the money. Does anyone know if we could go back to Western Union or any other Government body and make a complaint regarding the delay in payment.

I keep checking the western union remission site & NO updates since March. I know there are a LOT of hoops to go through - but for some of us (most of us) this $ will come in very handy. So, FTC, what is going on? I really wish I could understand better WHY the wheels of justice spin so incredibly slowly...

I received a notice stating I had not cashed my check yet and I had a deadline of August 31st to cash it or report it lost or never received. I am deaf so I had to use the email option. The deadline has since passed, and have gotten no reply back from the FTC. On my request to have them resend my check. I did indeed contact them asking for a replacement check as I never received mine, before the the deadline. Will I still get my replacement check, although I have gotten no reply yet. But I most definitey requested it before my deadline had passed?


Please make a copy of your comment from September 4 and send it to Thank you, FTC Staff.

I was involved in this type of scam and for some reason was dropped. I sent the form back to you on 11/30/2018. Please add me back in. I lost over $600 via Western Union to scammers.


FYI, this is not a scam nor fake. I filed my loss from a scam that occurred in 2015. I reported it to local police and the Attorney General, of which each provided me filing claim report numbers. These claims including copies of scam documents (email communications between myself and this fake person, Oscar the scammer, a $2,500 check (fraud), the money order copies, and mailing envelope it arrived in. All of these seemed to expedite my claim and I received $2464.58 less the store’s fees of which Western Union does not refund. Good luck to you and alls who are moving forward in pursuit of a settlement.

I called again and asked for an update on my claim. They said that DOJ expects a distribution date for the remaining claims by the end of the year. Here’s to hoping this is over before 2021!

I think we are entitled to an update at this point. Like I said checks should not have been issued until all claims were reviewed.

100% agree!

They just did a second distribution on September 23, 2020, so you may want to call to see if you are in that batch.

I received a letter from Western Union


Thank you for your email inquiry. The purpose of this email is to provide a status update on your Western Union Remission claim.

Your claim is preliminarily approved for $XXXX.XX. We are preparing to send out the letters and checks for those claims approved for an award. We are hoping to mail letters and checks in the third quarter.

What was the date Of this email?

The end of August

I was told a long time ago that all petitions had to be reviewed before distributing money. Why are they telling us Now that they are still reviewing claims when they have sent out some payments March 10, 2020?

There is an message dated March 10, 2020 on the Gilardi & Co website. It says: This first round of payments is one of several expected to occur in the Western Union remission. The Justice Department continues to review petitions for remission from potential victims of the Western Union fraud and anticipates authorizing compensation for many more victims in the coming months.

Hi Im wondering why i cant get a status of if my claim is approved or not. Just get the same response... The Dept of Justice is reviewing claims and when they're done a letter and checks should be mailed by the end of this year. But everything looks good in my file, yet still no definite answer either.

its a shame they are keeping our money until the end of the year then its going be until summer then fall everbody dhould have got there payments the same time now we playing the waiting game


For information about the claims process:

Ive emailed and called numerous times only to be told the same thing over and over. I even proved my claim with evidence and cant get a straight answer.

I live in outback Australia and post is when i drive 2 hours into town. I Called the Administrator number to ask the status of my claim only to get the same run around. I was told by a person that did not sound American that NO my check was not in this batch, but there will be another mail out by Christmas. I have sent in copies of all MTCN and told by account was not deficient, so what is the holdup. Their must be working from a database, so why cannot the staff see where your file is at and respond. Mine has been in since Jan2018

When I can expect the refund check?

It is now 6 months since checks were first started being sent out. I am in Australia and despite numerous letters and emails to Gilardi and Co I have only had one reply which was a standard proforma email reply. It is concerning how long this process is taking and that no individual replies seem to be received. I notice the same complaint in the comments all the time. It is nearly time for the second round of checks to be sent so hopefully more of us will have a resolution to this process soon.

My family was torn apart and lost a significant amount of money due to a scam funneled through WU. We filed all the appropriate papers and were denied, filed again and were offered 1/3 of what we lost, so we filed one more time and we have been ignored ever since. The last letter we received was in the first part of 2019. Numerous phone calls, emails, have resulted in no response. I understand that it takes a long time but families suffered from this disaster and are trying to find relief and closure. Is it really not that hard to provide updates on a website, answer phone calls, or even respond to emails? At the amount of interest generated on $586 million, you should be able to hire a team to respond. It is disgraceful how we are being treated.

100% agree They must earn big interest so it will be in there account for as long as possible.

Dear FTC
could you please be more transparent and give us (victims of scam) a statement and interest earned of the money that has been deposited by Western Union as you know this money belongs to the victims of scam.

It may be that a lot of us “old-timers” that got scammed will have died before we get any of the money from this settlement. It is making me think that there is no more money left from this settlement....that it was used for something else.

There is an update that 2nd rounds were sent out.

There is an update as of 09/23/20 on the Western Union Remission website. Says there are more claims being paid soon. $147 million of approved lossses to 33,000 people.

Thank God! My check from the second distribution was issued yesterday on September 23rd. It is definitely much needed right now more then ever. Right on time!

How did you find that out?

Yes while the rest of is still have to wait. Totally unfair!

I called and spoke with a young man who took his time and looked into my information for me. He said my check was issued the day of the 23rd for the full amount. And said I should receive it by this week.

Was hopeful I would be included in this second dispersement but once again I was not and my claim is still pending. So frustrating. Now they say I must again wait for another dispersement date. Probably another 6 months if it follows the pattern of the last two.

Same here! So frustrating! Hopefully it wont be another 6 months. All they say is it is still under review. Hopefully by Christmas time.

When start to send checks?

Anyone read this in the DOJ announcement. They haven’t even completed reviewing the submissions for those who filed by the deadline but are still accepting new petitions. What about us that filed ages ago way before the deadline? This process has been incredibly frustrating. “The department is accepting petitions on an ongoing basis and will be providing potential victims who have not applied for remission the opportunity to apply.”

Yes, and they should not have sent checks out to anybody until all claims were reviewed. I did everything I was supposed to and I am not on the 1st or 2nd distribution. If you look at the trend, it means that round 3 wont be till next year!

hang in there checks coming in soon just got mine

Since they only paying out 538 million , there we only probably be 2 more rounds of checks and that will be it. I receive mine in the second batch that started on September 23rd 2020. For as new petitions its up to DOJ to accept those or not.

I just checked when I filed my claim. January 6 2018. Years later (approaching three) and nothing.

The September 10 2018 update from westernunionremission dot com said “ Payments cannot be issued until all petitions are reviewed.”

They don’t even follow their own rules.

On September 23, 2020, we posted a blog saying refund checks worth about $147 million are going out to almost 33,000 people who sent money to scammers through Western Union wire transfers.  Those checks are in addition to the $153 million in checks announced in this blog. 

You can get updates at Gilardi & Co. posted an update on September 23, 2020.

I just received my check today from the second round. They started the second round on September 23, 2020.

I just got a check and it says the check is from national huntington bank. The letter is from United States v. The Western Union Company. Kinda worried about cashing it.

Huntington National Bank is the bank that Gilardi & Co. uses when it sends people checks in the Western Union case.


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