AP News

Montana legal group gets $1.2M from settlement


BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — State insurance officials say a Montana legal services charity will receive $1.2 million from a law firm that represented plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit over insurance fees.

Montana Securities and Insurance Commissioner Monica Lindeen is scheduled to announce final resolution of the lawsuit against Farmers Group, Inc. in Billings on Thursday.

After Farmers struck a $455 million deal to settle the case more than a year ago, officials from several states protested the return of unclaimed settlement funds to the company's subsidiaries.

The $1.2 million from the plaintiff's attorneys will go to Montana Justice Foundation, a non-profit group that gives grants for legal assistance for people who can't afford an attorney.

Lindeen's office says the foundation has seen its annual budget cut by more than 80 percent since 2007.


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