Category Archives: Consumer Litigation

New report on damages in consumer protection lawsuits

Good Jobs First reports that “[o]ver the past two decades, major companies have paid out over $25 billion in damages and settlements in class action and multi-district consumer protection lawsuits filed throughout the United States” concerning overcharging customers for goods and services or engaging in false advertising. Read the details here.

Court allows consumer to bring TCPA case concerning calls to number on Do-Not-Call registry

In a case under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held today that the owner and subscriber of a phone with a number listed on the Do-Not-Call Registry suffers an injury sufficient to confer standing when unsolicited telemarketing calls or texts are sent to the number in violation of the […]

11th Circuit holds FCRA does not provide cause of action for disagreement over fraudulent charges

Shelly Milgram’s employee opened, in Milgram’s name, a credit card with Chase and ran up tens of thousands of dollars in debt–then illegally accessed Milgram’s bank accounts and used them to partially pay off the monthly statements. When the scheme was discovered (with the employee later convicted of fraud), Milgram reported the fraud to Chase […]

7th Circuit Holds Time and Money to Send Debt Validation Request Supports Standing

Yvonne Mack received a debt collection notice, referring to a US Bank credit card she had held. She was uncertain that the debt amount was accurate, and thus a submitted a request for validation of the debt via certified mail. She received no response. She then received a second debt collection notice. Confused, she went […]

“How Jury Grievance Reports Whitewash Corporate Misconduct”

The Center for Justice and Democracy has issued a report titled “Nuclear Fizzle: How Jury Grievance Reports Whitewash Corporate Misconduct and Dehumanize Victims.” Here is the brief summary: “Corporate lobby groups are issuing reports criticizing juries when their large corporate members lose cases (which we call “jury grievance reports”). Their focus is on what they […]

Essential Oils unsupported health claims are beyond “puffery,” 2nd Circuit holds

“Essential oils” have become very popular over the past few years, in part due to confusion that, in this context, “essential” does not mean “indispensable or necessary,” but rather refers to the means by which they are derived from plants. An essential oil company called Young Living had marketed its products as being “therapeutic-grade,” and […]

Ninth Circuit *Can* Believe It’s Not Butter…It’s a Spray

FDA regulations set out different “serving sizes” that should be used on nutrition labels for different categories of food. In the “Fats and Oils” category, regulations have different sizes for “Butter, margarine, oil, shortening,” “Butter replacement, Powder,” and “Spray types.” Consumers sued the makers of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! Spray” contending that the […]

Consumers Outside Zone of Interests of Lanham Act, Says Sixth Circuit

Can consumers bring a Lanham Act claim for false advertising against a company that deceived them? In an opinion issued yesterday, the Sixth Circuit said no. Applying the Supreme Court’s 2014 Lexmark decision, the court held that only those who suffer an injury to a commercial interest are within the zone of interest of the […]

DC Circuit on Fail-Safe Classes and Rule 23

The D.C. Circuit today issued an opinion granting a Rule 23(f) petition and vacating a district court’s denial of class certification on the grounds that the class definition created an impermissible “fail-safe” class– i.e., a class whose membership can only be ascertained through a determination of the merits of the case. The plaintiffs, former employee […]

Casting doubt on availability of service awards, 2nd Circuit affirms massive interchange-fee settlement

Almost twenty years ago, various groups of merchants filed antitrust litigation against Visa, Mastercard, and banks that serve as payment-card issuers for those networks, tied to the “interchange fees” charged for each transaction. (In full disclosure, I worked on one of the district court cases over a decade ago. I remember close-to-nothing about the case.)  […]