Sony Cyberattack Lawsuit Settles for $8 Million and Establishes the New Mass Tort Class Action

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The emergence of the cyber attack class action as the new mass tort was further evidenced when Sony, less than one year after the first class action was filed, has agreed to pay up to $8 million to reimburse current and former employees for losses, preventative measures and legal fees related to last year’s data breach. The agreement must still be approved by a federal judge in the Central District of California, but, under the proposed terms, Sony will pay “up to $10,000 a person, capped at $2.5m, to reimburse workers for identity theft losses, up to $1,000 each to cover the cost of credit-fraud protection services, capped at $2m, and up to $3.5m to cover legal fees.”

According to recent court filings, the settlement was reached on September 1, 2015, a mere 9 months after the first class action lawsuit was filed on December 15, 2014.  With a proposed $3.5m to cover legal fees associated such a brief representation, this new area of law provides mass tort firms like Weitz &  Luxenburg a significant source of revenue, particularly when compared with the time and expense associated with asbestos and other mass-tort lawsuits.