California District Court Finds CAFA’s Amount-in-Controversy Requirement Satisfied and No Local Controversy Alleged; Denies Motion to Remand

The Southern District of California denied a plaintiff’s motion to remand a putative class action removed pursuant to the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA), where the plaintiff had alleged that the primary defendant’s product, Chobani yogurt, had become “the best-selling brand of Greek yogurt in the United States;” had annual revenues estimated at $1 billion in 2012; and had “collected tens of millions of dollars” in California alone (as the result of allegedly deceptive ... Keep Reading »

Internet Savvy Senior Lacks Standing to Bring Website Privacy Putative Class Claims Against AARP

The United States District Court for the District of Columbia recently dismissed a putative class action alleging that AARP violated its website privacy policy by allowing Facebook and Adobe to collect personal information about its users. The plaintiff alleged that AARP and its subsidiary AARP Services, Inc. (collectively, “AARP”), which advocate for individuals over the age of 50, breached their privacy policy by representing to users that certain third parties might ... Keep Reading »

Seventh Circuit Cleans Up the Law; Holds Rule 68 Offer of Complete Relief Does Not Render Litigation Moot

In a case that began as a putative class action, the Seventh Circuit held that a Rule 68 offer of complete relief does not render litigation moot. Plaintiff in Chapman v. First Index filed a "junk-fax" suit pursuant to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), 47 U.S.C. § 227 et seq., after allegedly receiving two unsolicited and unauthorized faxes from First Index. He demanded $3,000 plus an injunction under § 227(b)(3)(A). Plaintiff proposed to represent a class ... Keep Reading »

Seventh Circuit Petitioned for Rehearing En Banc to Determine Whether Data Breach Class Claims Survive Clapper, Satisfy Article III Standing Requirements

In January 2014, luxury retailer Neiman Marcus disclosed that it had suffered a cyberattack in which hackers may have gained access to 350,000 credit and debit cards used at its stores in late 2013. Plaintiffs, all of whom made credit or debit card purchases from the retailer during the relevant time period, filed a putative class action lawsuit on behalf of themselves and all other customers whose card information may have been compromised.  Neiman Marcus moved to ... Keep Reading »

Eleventh Circuit Doubles Down on “No Class Tolling” Rule

The Eleventh Circuit has doubled down on its prior holding that a pending class action will not toll the statute of limitations for a later class action seeking to represent the same class. Plaintiff brought a class action alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, which carries a four-year statute of limitations. The state court granted summary judgment against plaintiff for lack of standing. A new plaintiff then sought to represent the class in ... Keep Reading »

Seventh Circuit Applies “Weak” Ascertainability Requirement, Splits From Third and Eleventh Circuits

A panel from the Seventh Circuit split from the Third and Eleventh Circuits and rejected what it described to be a “heightened” ascertainability requirement under Rule 23(b)(3). In Mullins v. Direct Digital, LLC, plaintiff filed a class action complaint alleging that defendant had misrepresented, in marketing materials and on product labels, the purported health benefits of a glucosamine supplement in violation of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business ... Keep Reading »

Western District of Missouri Declines to Deliver Certification in Class Action Based on Alleged Newspaper Subscription Overcharges

The Western District of Missouri denied class certification in an action alleging three regional newspapers—the Kansas City Star, the Fort Worth Star Telegram, and the Belleville News-Democrat—unlawfully double billed some of their subscribers by shortening the length of their subscriptions. The named plaintiffs, subscribers to the Kansas City Star only, alleged that without providing proper notice, the newspapers deducted additional charges for special or premium ... Keep Reading »

Rice Capades: Court Certifies a Class of Lead Lawyers Against Defendant Law Firms Who Allegedly Used the Class’s Work Product in Rice Litigation

The Eastern District of Missouri certified an unusual class of lawyers and their clients who undertook a collective effort to litigate claims against Bayer related to the purported “contamination” of the U.S. rice supply by Bayer’s genetically modified rice. The defendants are law firms that allegedly benefitted from the work performed by the class in state and federal cases against Bayer. Bayer’s introduction of genetically modified rice into the U.S. domestic rice ... Keep Reading »

Representative Action Under California’s Private Attorneys General Act Not Waived Through Employment Agreement’s Arbitration Provision

The Central District of California held that a waiver of representative actions in an employment agreement’s arbitration provision did not preclude a former employee from pursuing in court a claim under California’s Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (PAGA).  The court further held that the PAGA claim could only be brought in court and not in arbitration.  The plaintiff asserted, on behalf of a putative class, several claims against his former employer for the alleged ... Keep Reading »

Eleventh Circuit Holds Rule 23 Trumps State Law Precluding Private Class Actions

The Alabama Deceptive Trade Practices Act’s (ADTPA) restriction on private class actions does not apply in federal court. Federal Rule 23 controls. That’s what the Eleventh Circuit recently held, relying on Shady Grove Orthopedic Associates, P.A. v. Allstate Insurance Co., 559 U.S. 393, 130 S. Ct. 1431, 176 L.Ed.2d 311 (2010). Plaintiff contracted for installation of a wood fence. The manufacturer warranted that the wood was treated and would remain free from rot, ... Keep Reading »