Last year, lawsuits were filed against Motel 6 after it became known that a couple of locations in Arizona released the personal information of Latino guests and handed it over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Now Motel 6 is seeking to settle the class action lawsuits by paying $7.6 million to Latino guests for breaking the law.
“Motel 6 fully recognizes the seriousness of the situation and accepts full responsibility for both compensating those who were harmed and taking the necessary steps to ensure that we protect the privacy of our guests,” said the statement provided by Maggie Giddens, G6 Hospitality’s managing director of external relations, according to TIME magazine.
On Jan. 3, 2018, Attorney General Bob Ferguson released information regarding their lawsuit against Motel 6 saying that personal information of at least 9,151 guests were given to ICE, which resulted in 20 arrests. “The personal information released included customers’ driver’s license numbers, room number, name, guest identification number, date of birth and license plate number. The voluntary release of this information constitutes an unfair and deceptive business practice, and violates the Consumer Protection Act,” Ferguson said in a press release.
At the time the news broke, Motel 6 said that this illegal act was done on a local level and “without the knowledge of senior management.”
“After news reports in Arizona revealed Motel 6 staff was handing over guests’ private information, Motel 6 implied this was a local problem,” Ferguson said. “We have found that is not true. Washingtonians have a right to privacy, and protection from discrimination. I will hold Motel 6 accountable and uncover the whole story of their disturbing conduct,” and added that Motel 6 has more than 1,200 locations across North America with more than 105,000 rooms.
While Motel 6 said they want to pay $7.6 million, attorney’s on behalf of the class action lawsuit say they may have to to pay up to $8.9 million in legal costs.