Can I take legal action against a company for disclosing my SSN, etc. to third parties?

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Can I take legal action against a company for disclosing my SSN, etc. to third parties?

I did a commercial for a sporting goods store. When they sent me the check they included a list of all the other actors, including everyone’s SSN and other personal informatioin. The other actors received the same list. Even if I did have a case, would I be able to receive any monetary compensation for this?

Asked on September 18, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Maryland

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You have hit the issue on the head--whether its worth suing.

A negligent or careless disclosure of confidential, personal, etc. information--especially information which can so readily be used in identity theft--can easily give rise to liability, or an obligation to pay. However, the legal system only compensates for actual losses, costs, damages, etc. incurred, not for merely possible ones. Until and unless you suffer some actual loss as a result of this negligent disclosure, there is no compensation you can recover, and therefore nothing to sue for. (Arguably, you could try to sue to get the company to pay for a credit monitoring service for a year; it is doubtful that is worth the cost and effort, however.)


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