Have you received an unwanted phone call asking you to sign up for satellite television services? You’re not alone — and now a Dish Network lawsuit settlement might entitle you to cash.
How much? $1,200. Per call.
That might sound too good to be true, but it’s real: Thousands are eligible for payment under the terms of the Dish Network lawsuit. It stems from a telemarketing campaign conducted by the satellite provider during 2010 and 2011, according to CBS News.
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"The evidence was that Dish Network knew what was going on," John W. Barrett, an attorney with Bailey Glasser, told CBS News. "It had the ability to put an end to it but didn't."
The “it” refers to calls made from Dish Network to people on the Do Not Call Registry. The Registry was designed to stop unwanted telemarketing calls — something Dish Network "willfully and knowingly violated,” according to the lawsuit judge, resulting in 51,000 calls in violation of the list.
The $61 million lawsuit originally entitled affected consumers to $400 per call, but the judge later tripled it to $1,200. Per call.
But many consumers entitled to the cash don’t believe it’s real.
Chicago woman Deborah Turner received 15 calls between 2010 and 2011, entitling her to a whopping $18,000 in the Dish Network lawsuit.
"'Yeah, right' is my first thought. Right," she said of learning her payout amount.
Other affected consumers have similar feelings.
"Talking to them firsthand, I learned that they thought that we were, A, telemarketers, or B, trying to scam them," Barrett told CBS News of notifying consumers about the money.
But it’s 100 percent real — and you can check if you’re entitled to cash by entering your phone number on this website.
The Dish Network lawsuit is being appealed by the company. A rep for the company said the unwanted calls were a result of missteps from a third-party contractor. It may be awhile before the checks are cut, but Barrett wants to make sure consumers get the money they’re owed.
"We have an obligation to be standing up on the mountaintops shouting about the result that we got in this lawsuit to try to reach the people that need to be reached," he said.