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Notification Begins in $3.4B Indian Settlement (Jan 27, 2011)

HELENA, Mont. (AP) - A court-appointed media company has started a campaign to notify hundreds of thousands of Native Americans they may be beneficiaries of a $3.4 billion settlement.

Last month, a federal judge granted preliminary approval of the settlement over mismanaged money accounts held in trust by the federal government for Indian landowners. The settlement is the result of a 14-year lawsuit by Elouise Cobell of Browning, Mont.

Kinsella Media has begun notifying potential beneficiaries through the mail and through newspaper, radio, television and online advertising.

Beneficiaries have to register within 45 days of the court's final approval of the settlement. A fairness hearing has been set for April 20.

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