If some clients seem a little happier, it may be because, after nearly a yearlong delay, De Beers class action payments to consumer claimants are poised to go out soon.
On April 9, class action attorneys filed a motion to disburse the $109 million in funds earmarked for consumers who filed claims in the antitrust case.
“The judge should sign the order within a few weeks,” says Joseph J. Tabacco, one of the attorneys on the case. “Then checks will take a few weeks thereafter to go out.”
According to a court filing submitted by claims administrator Rust Consulting, some 606,044 consumer claims have been filed, and of those, 574,860 were deemed eligible. The average payment amount is $180.75. Payments under $10 were disqualified.
Rust is recommending that the 5,820 valid late claims be allowed.
Consumers or industry members who have queries about individual claims or about the process in general should contact the claim administrators at diamondsclassaction.com.
The De Beers class action settlement received final court approval last May. The first checks went out to industry members in the “indirect” purchaser class in August. Many industry members said they were quite pleased.
Checks to “direct purchasers”—companies that bought rough diamonds from De Beers or its rivals—have yet to be distributed.