Discover Financial Service agreed to an $8.7 million settlement of a class-action lawsuit filed in 2012 that charged the company with making prerecorded telephone calls to consumers who had not "expressly invited or authorized the calls."

The class has an estimated 8 million potential members who may receive a cash award or credit to their card balances, said U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White in Northern California, who gave final approval to the settlement last week.  

Lead plaintiffs Andrew Steinfeld and Walter Bradley had pointed out in the lawsuit that, in 2007, the Federal Communications Commission cited Discover for making unauthorized robocalls. If the company continued the practice, it faced fines of up to $11,000 for each violation, the suit said.

Steinfeld said he received a Discover card in January 2011 and began getting prerecorded cell phone calls less than a year later in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

"The court concludes that the settlement agreement is fair, reasonable and adequate," Judge White wrote.

The judge also awarded $2.2 million for attorneys’ fees and costs, and $2,000 to each of the named plaintiffs. Law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimman & Bernstein, which has offices in San Francisco, New York and Nashville, brought the case.

The court’s approval of the settlement was first reported by Courthouse News Service. 

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