What is a third-party claims filer?

A third-party claims filer, or claims filing service provider, is a company that seeks out potential class action members and files claims on their behalf. Third-party claims filers offer to handle the entire claim submission process for a class member in exchange for a percentage of their client’s reward. The third-party filer acts as an intermediary between the class member and the class action itself – filling out all information and attaching supplementary documentation, submitting the claim, remedying any claim defects, and distributing the proceeds.

Third-party filing companies have historically focused on complex antitrust and securities settlements. Today, such companies have expanded to other practice areas including product liability, consumer finance, employment matters, and more.

It’s important to engage a settlement administrator who has identified and has good relationships with reputable third-party filers.

Benefits of Third-party Claims Filing Companies

  • Large corporations can use third-party filers in cases requiring a lot of specific documentation, so they can focus on the business, rather than the busy work associated with the claim.
  • Busy claimants may feel more comfortable working with a third-party filer if they are involved in complex claims processes with high potential recoveries – such as securities cases.
  • Third-party filers can act as a megaphone for class notification, gathering more class members.
  • These companies can lighten the call volume for settlement administrators, shortening the timeline.

Potential Drawbacks of Third-party Claims Filers

  • Some third-party claims filers may use misleading language to solicit class members.
  • Third-party claims filers are rarely candid about the true necessity of their services.
  • In the past, courts have issued orders limiting the activities of third-party filers.
  • Third-party filers are notorious for submitting “placeholder claims” past deadline, slowing the process.
  • Third-party filers may submit erroneous, duplicate claims already submitted by claimants themselves.

Is A Third-party Claims Filer Really Needed?

Class members do not need the assistance of third-party filers. Many class actions are manageable enough for members to efficiently file on their own especially when there is a settlement administrator available (at no additional cost) to help class members complete claims forms and answer any questions. Ultimately, it is up to individual class members to decide whether or not to engage such a service.

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