SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Legal Newsline) — California Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced April 12 a multistate settlement with Western Union that resolves allegations that third parties were using the service to defraud consumers.

Western Union will pay $586 million in consumer restitution through a related, but separate agreement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and U.S. Department of Justice. In the federal settlement, California consumers may be eligible for $65 million in refunds.

“There is no excuse for Western Union to expose their customers to fraud,” Becerra said. “Hardworking families trusted Western Union's services only to be ripped off. I want to thank supervising deputy attorney general Michael Elisofon and deputy attorney general Daniel Osborn who represented California in this multistate settlement and helped to make these families whole.”

The multistate settlement involves a permanent injunction that requires Western Union to create an anti-fraud program. This program must be designed to help detect and prevent wire transfer service scams.

In a news release, Becerra noted that consumers should always be ware of wiring money after a solicitation from an unknown source.

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