Wal-Mart is a nationally recognized big box store offering low prices for customers who have everyday needs. The store employs more than 1.2 million people, and many of them are currently in a situation in which they could receive a big payout from the company for their personal preferences. In July 2015 a class-action lawsuit was filed against the corporation alleging the retail giant was unfair, discriminatory, and otherwise behaved inappropriately toward their employees regarding their personal lives.
The lawsuit states that anyone who was married to a person of the same gender was denied proper health insurance for their family by the company. The lawsuit states that the company hadn’t yet changed their policies regarding same-sex marriage, and the lawsuit has currently been settled for a staggering $7.5 million. There are stipulations regarding the policy, the payout, and the way you can be reimbursed. If you worked for Wal-Mart or Sam’s Club between January 1, 2011 and December 31, 2013, you’re entitled to as much as $15,000 in payouts.
What You Need to Know
You and/or your same-sex partner must have been employed by the company at some point in 2011, 2012, or 2013. You must have been eligible for health insurance from the company in this time. The company did not offer same-sex marriage family insurance at the time, and they’ve not admitted to doing anything wrong since the lawsuit was filed in 2015 by a woman named Jacqueline Cote.
The laws and policies regarding health insurance at Wal-Mart changed effective January 1, 2014, but the company should have offered it earlier to employees. They have settled the case and agreed to pay out $7.5 million to those affected by this delayed change, but only so the company could avoid being taken to court to go through the process of a trial. Settling keeps the information private and out of the news more so than a trial.
If you were employed at this time, you were married to your same-sex spouse, and you were not given the kind of family health insurance you’re entitled to, you have a chance to claim a payout. There are two ways to claim your money, and both are a little exhaustive.
Long Form Lawsuit Filings
If you choose to take part in the long-form filing, you’ll find out you might end up with more than $15,000, which is $5,000 per year for the missing insurance you were entitled to. You could get up to $15,000, but only if you were employed and married during the full three years.
The long-form is required by those who did pay medical expenses that they want reimbursed by the company. This includes the up to $15,000 pay-out the company settled for, and it also includes any other medical expenses you or your family members incurred during this time that would have been paid for and covered by the family insurance you were denied. To receive reimbursement for this, you must have all the paperwork from your hospital stay, you must have receipts, and you must submit each one.
Short Form Lawsuit Filings
Not everyone who was affected by the insurance issues during this time needs to file a long-form payout. Some people need only file a short form if they did not have any medical bills that require reimbursement during this time. The short form is a lot easier to file, and it’s the one that will net you up to $15,000 in reimbursements from Wal-Mart.
Paperwork and Further Information
To file a short or long form, you must receive the proper forms. These are easily found using any of the following methods:
• Email WalmartSameSexSpouseBenefitsSettelement.kccllc.com
• Visit www.walmartsamesexspousebenefitssettlement.com
• Call 1-877-241-7543
• Write to: Cote v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Claims Administrator, c/o Kurtzman Carson Consultants, POS Box 43415, Providence, RI 02940-3415
You’ll find you can either download the information and forms you need, find out if you can qualify, or even request the forms are sent to you so you can get them in the mail and take part in your claim for cash owed to you by Wal-Mart. If you’re eligible for this refund, don’t miss out on filing for what’s rightfully yours.
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