TRENTON - If a scammer coerced, cajoled or convinced you to wire money through Western Union in the past 13 years, you might be eligible for compensation, if you reported the incident.


New Jersey Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino announced that applications are being accepted for portions of Western Union's $586,000,000 national settlement, which the state entered.

Eligibility is open to people who were victimized between January 1, 2004, and January 19, 2017. Those who reported the incidents to Western Union, or to the Attorney General's office, should watch the mail in the next two weeks, for claim forms from the federal settlement administrator.

If you receive no form, but believe that you have an eligible claim, visit the Western Union settlement web page or call 1-844-319-2124. The due dte is February 12, 2018.

The Colorado communications company, following a multi-state investigation into fraud-driven transfers, was required to create a comprehensive anti-fraud program

Porrino's office warns that, because filing claims is free of charge, no one should pay another individual to file a claim for them. No one involved in handling claims will call to ask for bank account or credit card numbers. .

"Unfortunately, con artists use all types of ruses and tall tales to convince people to wire them money - and they sometimes succeed. Some of these 'send money' scams may appeal to the target's humanitarianism or love of family, while others may suggest the would-be victim needs to wire money in order to claim a big sweepstakes prize," Porrino said in prepared comments,

He urges potential victims to approach unexpected bad, or good, news involving money with a healthy dose of skepticism..

"If a person is being told a loved one is in need or in danger, we urge that he or she proceed with deliberation and make every effort to authenticate the story independently," Porrino said. "And if a supposed 'bargain' or 'contest prize' sounds too good to be true, it probably is. We recommend that they not take the bait."

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