'Free cruise' lawsuit settlement offers up to $900 for claimants

By Allen Cone  |  Aug. 16, 2017 at 4:48 PM
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Aug. 16 (UPI) -- A robocall advertising a cruise trip giveaway could mean hundreds of dollars for consumers under the terms of a recent court settlement.

In the class-action lawsuit settlement, those solicited by a marketing company might get between $300 and $900.

Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line reportedly allowed Resort Marketing Group to make robocalls offering free cruises in violation of the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act. Philip Charvat, who filed the lawsuit, said he had received unsolicited telemarketing calls.

He later settled with the companies before the case had a chance to go to trial. A federal judge's preliminary approval last month directed the companies to pay between $7 million and $12.5 million to claimants, who can still seek the money.

The owner, subscriber or user of a landline or cellphone who received a recorded telemarketing call between 2009 and 2014 may get up to $300 from the suit. Individuals may file up to three claims for a maximum payment of $900, but actual payouts will be based on the number of claims received.

Individuals can check the website to see if their number is part of the settlement. It needs to be listed in Resort Marketing Group's database. You can also submit a claim form at 855-636-6134.

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act runs the National Do Not Call Registry, which bans telemarketers from calling phone numbers on the registry.

"The TCPA imposes substantial penalties on companies that knowingly violate its telemarketing restrictions," Paul Tassin wrote of the suit on Top Class Actions. "It generally forbids telemarketers from making calls using automated dialing equipment and prerecorded messages, unless the person being called has given the caller prior express written consent to be contacted that way."

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