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Consumer Protection

  • June 5, 2018

    Apple Won't Cover Watches That Shatter, Consumer Claims

    Apple has sold millions of watches with defective screens at risk of cracking, shattering or detaching, but refuses to cover the cost of repairs under its limited warranty, a proposed class of consumers claimed Monday in California federal court.

  • June 4, 2018

    Facebook Faces Heat Over 3rd-Party Data Access Report

    Facebook on Sunday fought back against a media report that it had allowed Apple, Microsoft, Samsung and dozens of other device makers broad access to personal data belonging to Facebook users and their friends, as the New York attorney general and several U.S. lawmakers voiced concerns over the news. 

  • June 4, 2018

    Pre-Cert Check Correctly Cut Off Class Action, Ill. Court Says

    An Illinois appeals panel on Friday upheld an order dismissing a man’s putative class action over service disruption at a telephone service company, agreeing with the lower court the check he received for relief of his claim before moving for class certification did not need to contemplate court costs to take effect.

  • June 4, 2018

    Express Scripts, CVS Want EpiPen Cost ERISA Suit Tossed

    Express Scripts Holding Co., CVS Health Corp. and other pharmacy benefit managers urged a Minnesota federal judge Friday to toss a proposed class action alleging that they breached their Employee Retirement Income Security Act duties and caused large increases to EpiPen’s list price, arguing that the companies weren’t fiduciaries subject to the law.

  • June 4, 2018

    Justices Remind Creditors To Get Debt Agreements In Writing

    Creditors who rely on the good faith of debtors for repayment were firmly reminded Monday that any agreement to extend credit should be in writing, according to experts weighing in on the U.S. Supreme Court's decision concerning the dischargeability of consumer debts procured by fraudulent statements.

  • June 4, 2018

    Wash. Sues Google, Facebook Over Campaign Ad Records

    The attorney general of Washington state sued Facebook and Google in state court Monday, alleging the tech giants violated state campaign finance laws that require advertisers keep publicly available records of political advertisements.

  • June 4, 2018

    Samsung, Consumers Reach Deal In Washing Machine MDL

    A group of consumers have reached a settlement in multidistrict litigation against Samsung and retailers over the company’s top-loading washing machines that allegedly vibrate and blow their lids off, with both sides announcing a deal Friday that includes a minimum recall rebate of 15.5 percent of the estimated washer purchase price.

  • June 4, 2018

    GM Escapes Bulk Of Consumers' Suit Over Oil-Guzzling Cars

    A California federal judge on Friday dismissed the majority of a putative class action alleging defects in General Motors LLC’s Chevy Equinoxes cause their engines to burn through oil, finding the plaintiff drivers had not adequately alleged their vehicles suffered from a manufacturing defect that was under express warranty.

  • June 4, 2018

    End-Payor Attys Want $16M From $43M Medicis, Impax Deals

    Motley Rice LLC and Hilliard & Shadowen LLP asked a Massachusetts federal judge Friday for a one-third cut plus $1.6 million in litigation expenses from $43 million in settlements they secured from Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp. and Impax Laboratories Inc. over the allegedly delayed launch of a generic acne medicine.

  • June 4, 2018

    9th Circ. Sides With Mars In Child-Labor Labeling Suit

    The Ninth Circuit on Monday affirmed a district court’s decision to toss a putative class action alleging Mars Inc. had a duty to disclose on its candy labels that African child slaves might have produced its cocoa, finding that California laws don’t obligate companies to make such disclosures.

  • June 4, 2018

    NJ Slams Feds' Plan To Yank Consumer Complaint Database

    New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal on Monday implored the federal government to maintain public access to its consumer complaint database on the financial industry, arguing that ending it could violate consumer protection and public information access laws.

  • June 4, 2018

    Consent Disputes Emerge As First GDPR Battlefield

    The first cases to test the reach of Europe’s new privacy regime will let regulators home in on just how much data tech juggernauts truly need to sweep up in order to run their platforms — and what data collections they need to explicitly ask users to consent to, legal experts say.

  • June 4, 2018

    FCC's Rules On Toll-Free Texting Cause Consent Concerns

    Tech companies have asked the Federal Communications Commission to consider commercial concerns ahead of its vote on whether to force text messaging providers to get permission before automatically enabling text-messaging capabilities for a business' toll-free number, saying the void of rules deters use and investment in the technology.

  • June 4, 2018

    Inventor Hits Promotion Co. With $72M Fraud Class Action

    A Texas woman has filed a $72 million proposed class action in Pennsylvania federal court against a company she claims lied to her about the profit potential of her invention, pressured her into borrowing thousands of dollars to pay the company to promote her idea and then pocketed the funds without providing any services.

  • June 4, 2018

    Ford, Consumers Reach Deal In Faulty Touch Screen Row

    Ford has agreed to pay up to $500 in cash and offer free software upgrades to a class of consumers alleging the automaker sold vehicles with faulty touch screens to stave off a jury trial, according to a settlement agreement filed in a California federal court Friday.

  • June 4, 2018

    Rosenworcel Blasts FCC's Inaction On Surveillance Claims

    Federal Communications Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel said she's perplexed the agency declined to investigate surveillance devices used for intercepting cellphone calls and texts found operating around Capitol Hill last year, adding the agency's inaction "makes no sense."

  • June 4, 2018

    Phelan Hallinan Again Dodges Foreclosure Fee Class Suit

    A Pennsylvania appeals court has upheld the dismissal of a proposed class action against Phelan Hallinan & Schmieg LLP over foreclosure-related legal fees, agreeing Friday that expanded statutory protections against excessive charges were enacted too late for the couple filing the suit.

  • June 4, 2018

    Frontier's Airbus Cabin Air Toxic To Passengers, Suit Claims

    Frontier Airlines Inc. puts its passengers at risk of passing out, choking and experiencing other ailments by allowing toxic fumes to enter the passenger cabin of its Airbus SAS planes, a passenger claims in a proposed class action filed Friday in California federal court.

  • June 1, 2018

    Senior Home, Kronos Can't Shake Ill. Biometric Privacy Suit

    An Illinois federal judge has refused to nix a putative class action accusing Smith Senior Living and its time clock supplier, Kronos, of violating the state's biometric privacy law by requiring Smith employees to scan their fingerprints, finding that the disclosure of a former employee's biometric data to Kronos created a concrete injury sufficient to establish standing.

  • June 1, 2018

    Colo. Enacts 'Groundbreaking' Data Breach Disclosure Law

    Businesses in Colorado will soon face one of America's strictest data breach notification laws, including a requirement that they alert customers within 30 days of possible exposure of private data, part of newly enacted legislation some privacy attorneys are calling "groundbreaking."

Expert Analysis

  • Don’t Sleep On The Dormant Commerce Clause

    Stephen McConnell

    The Fourth Circuit recently held that a Maryland statute, which prohibited drugmakers and distributors from charging an "unconscionable" price even on sales that occurred outside the state, was a violation of the dormant commerce clause. We cannot read this case without daydreaming about how its logic might apply to other cases, says Stephen McConnell of Reed Smith LLP.

  • The Fastest Federal Civil Court For A Decade

    Bob Tata

    Out of 94 district courts nationwide, the Eastern District of Virginia has the fastest civil trial docket in the country, now for at least the 10th straight year. The modern EDVA bench clearly takes pride in efficiently dispensing justice, and this dedication to efficiency has continued even in the face of increased filings, says Bob Tata of Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP.

  • A Survey Of Fla. Fiduciary Duty Breach Claims Against Banks

    Andrew Steif

    Although Florida’s federal and state courts have long held that banks or financial institutions do not owe their customers a fiduciary duty, a large percentage of cases filed by customers contain causes of action for breach of fiduciary duty. Andrew Steif of Holland & Knight LLP reviews the general standard for such claims and surveys the cases decided under it.

  • Why Garick V. Mercedes-Benz Stayed In Federal Court

    Allison Semaya

    Last month, a district court in Massachusetts ruled that a putative class action against Mercedes-Benz USA should remain in federal court. The case is a reminder that, though the defendant bears the burden of showing the amount-in-controversy requirement for removal has been met, determining that amount early in a lawsuit is not an exact science, says Allison Semaya of Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP.

  • Opinion

    Suing Gun Makers Is Not The Way To Curb Gun Violence

    Victor Schwartz

    Those seeking to stop gun violence should focus on convincing their elected representatives to enact thoughtful gun regulation, not creating new lawsuits. Repealing the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, as some have called for, would trample the rights of product manufacturers and siphon the blame away from criminals, says Victor Schwartz, co-chair of the public policy group at Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP.

  • Opinion

    State AGs Must Fill The CFPB Void, But That's Not Enough

    Karl Racine

    With Mick Mulvaney gutting the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the burden of standing up to giant, deep-pocketed financial institutions falls more heavily on state attorneys general. But in the end, such efforts can’t replace the power the CFPB has to protect consumers across all states equally, says District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine.

  • A Closer Look At Economic Issues In Food Labeling Cases

    Peter Rankin

    In recent food labeling cases, class action plaintiffs have claimed that inappropriate labeling affected consumer decision-making. Economists with Charles River Associates discuss issues with these types of allegations from an economic perspective.

  • AI Creates Legal Challenges For The Fashion Industry

    William Forni

    Artificial intelligence is playing a growing role in the product development, marketing and sales strategies of fashion designers and retailers. This revolution brings uncertainty in the areas of trade secret protection, traditional intellectual property rights and privacy law, say William Forni of Calvin Klein, and Ben Quarmby and Daniel Michaeli of MoloLamken LLP.

  • Opinion

    The Historic Legal Blunder That Enabled Our Gun Epidemic

    Robert W. Ludwig

    In a recent op-ed, former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens called for repealing the Second Amendment to help combat our nation's gun epidemic. Actually, it is the high court's ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller that is the problem. And it is only one court case away from being renounced as the historic blunder it is, says Robert W. Ludwig, counsel for the American Enlightenment Project.

  • Companies Can’t Afford To Ignore Accessibility

    John Capobianco

    Last year saw the fifth consecutive year of growth in the number of Americans with Disabilities Act lawsuits. Given the financial and reputational costs of such litigation, business owners and operators would be wise to evaluate current practices regarding accessibility and accessible services for deaf and hard-of-hearing patrons, says John Capobianco of VITAC Corporation.