Michaels has ducked a putative class-action lawsuit after a federal judge ruled that the plaintiffs could demonstrate any kind of “economic damage” from a breach that compromised the hobby retailer's customer data between May 8, 2013 and Jan. 27, 2014.

Plaintiffs in Moyer v. Michaels had accused Michaels of breaking Illinois's breach of contract and consumer fraud laws, claiming that the breach exposing credit and debit card data for 2.6 million customers, left them vulnerable to identity theft and other cyber crime. 

But Judge Elaine Bucklo of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Illinois tossed the suit, noting that they couldn't show they suffered financial damage as those laws require.

Bucklo did rule there are grounds to sue, saying the increased risk of identity theft in the breach's aftermath “is sufficiently imminent to give Plaintiffs standing.”