Mealey's California Section 17200

  • February 16, 2018

    Judge Declines To Apply ‘Fraudulent Misjoinder’ Standard In Bad Faith Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — Remand of an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit to state court is necessary because the Ninth Circuit U.S. Courts of Appeals has yet to adopt the “fraudulent misjoinder” standard established by the 11th Circuit, which an insurer argues is the basis for the action’s removal to federal court in the first place, a federal judge in California ruled Feb. 13 in remanding the action to state court (Maria I. Delgado v. Primerica Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 17-3744, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23615).

  • February 16, 2018

    Judge Refuses To Dismiss UCL Claim, Finds Poultry Ads Could Mislead Consumers

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on Feb. 9 refused to dismiss claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law asserted by nonprofit organizations against a poultry company, finding that the company’s claims that its products are natural and contain no antibiotics could mislead consumers (Organic Consumers Association, et al. v. Sanderson Farms Inc., No. 17-cv-03592, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23713).

  • February 15, 2018

    VidAngel Defends UCL, Antitrust Claims Against Studios To 9th Circuit

    SAN FRANCISCO — In its third appeal to the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a copyright dispute with several movie studios, video-filtering service provider VidAngel Inc. argues in a Feb. 12 brief that a trial court improperly dismissed its counterclaims under the Sherman Act and California’s unfair competition law (UCL), despite its ample pleadings of the studios’ collusive actions (Disney Enterprises Inc., et al. v. VidAngel Inc., No. 17-56665, 9th Cir.).

  • February 15, 2018

    Class Suit Accusing Hobby Lobby Of Fake Discounts Survives Dismissal

    SAN DIEGO — A California federal judge on Feb. 8 denied Hobby Lobby Stores Inc.’s motion to dismiss a class complaint accusing the retailer of creating false sale prices by using fictitious “marked” prices on its products (Christina Chase, et al. v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., et al., No. 17-881, S.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21165).

  • February 15, 2018

    Purchaser Asserts UCL, Other Claims Against Dealership In California Court

    SANTA ANA, Calif. — The purchaser of a vehicle that she alleges she was fraudulently induced into purchasing on Feb. 8 sued a dealership and its salesperson in a California state court, asserting claims for fraud and violations of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other California laws (Graciela Gutierrez-Gonzalez v. Tustin Import Auto Sales LLC, et al., No. 2018-00972305, Calif. Super., Orange Co.).

  • February 14, 2018

    Federal Judge Enjoins Hot Sauce Maker From Infringing On Trademarks

    LOS ANGELES — A California federal judge on Feb. 12 entered a default judgment on claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and trademark infringement asserted by a maker of hot sauce and granted a permanent injunction in its favor, enjoining another hot sauce maker from making or selling certain products containing similar marks (Tapatio Foods LLC v. Isaac Granados, No. 17-7532, C.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23618).

  • February 14, 2018

    Judge Partially Grants Dismissal For Nationstar, Rejects UCL, HBOR claims

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on Feb. 9 refused to dismiss a borrower’s claims for breach of contract and negligence asserted by a borrower against a bank but found that the bank did not commit unlawful acts in violation California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and that part of his claim for violation of the California Homeowners Bill of Rights (HBOR) also failed (Steve Johnson v. Nationstar Mortgage LLC, No. 3:17-cv-03676, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22829).

  • February 13, 2018

    Rhode Island City Sues Intel For Meltdown, Spectre Security Vulnerabilities

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — The city of Providence, R.I., on Feb. 12 filed a consumer protection class action complaint against Intel Corp. in California federal court, charging the microprocessor chip manufacturer with unfair competition and warranty violations related to the recently discovered “Meltdown” and “Spectre” security vulnerabilities that can reportedly affect millions of computers and devices worldwide, resulting in the exposure of users’ sensitive information (Providence v. Intel Corp., No. 5:18-cv-00894, N.D. Calif.).

  • February 13, 2018

    Judge Remands UCL, Other Claims Against Insurer To California Court

    LOS ANGELES — After finding that an insurance broker was not improperly joined in an action in which a moving company asserts claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other causes of action in relation to an insurer’s refusal to defend it in an underlying lawsuit, a California federal judge on Feb. 8 remanded the case to state court and declined to consider dismissal of the action (Earl Wayne Pullen, dba Carole & Jan’s Moving & Storage, v. TransGuard Insurance Company of America Inc., et al., No. 17-08631, C.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21177).

  • February 12, 2018

    High Court Finds UCL Claim Is Not Preempted By Federal Health And Safety Law

    SAN FRANCISCO — The California Supreme Court on Feb. 8 reversed an appeals court finding that a district attorney’s claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law asserted against a plastics maker in relation to an explosion that killed two employees were not preempted by federal occupational safety and health law, finding that those claims remain within a state’s responsibility under federal law to regulate worker safety (Solus Industrial Innovations LLC, et al. v. The Superior Court of Orange County, et al., No. S222314, Calif. Sup., 2018 Cal. LEXIS 934).

  • February 9, 2018

    Google Sued For Fraudulent Mobile Data Service Billing Practices

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — In a Feb. 5 putative class complaint in California court, a Colorado man claims that Google North America Inc. violates California’s unfair competition law (UCL), false advertising law (FAL) and Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) by billing its mobile service customers for data service obtained from other sources and providers (Gordon Beecher v. Google North America Inc., No. 5:18-cv-00753, N.D. Calif.).

  • February 9, 2018

    Drug Treatment Providers Say Allegations Support Contract, Health, UCL Claims

    LOS ANGELES — Substance abuse “coverage gaps” require an insurer to pay 100 percent of billed charges under California law, a trio of providers told a federal court in California on Feb. 5 (Casa Bella Recovery International Inc. v. Humana Inc., et al., Nos. 17-1801, 17-1804, 17-1807, C.D. Calif.).

  • February 9, 2018

    Judge Refuses To Dismiss Class Claims Related To Clorox’s Natural Labeling

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A California federal judge on Feb. 6 refused to dismiss claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other causes of action asserted by consumers against The Clorox Co., finding that the company’s “naturally derived” labeling could have deceived them into purchasing the products (Joseph Gregorio, et al. v. The Clorox Company, No. 17-cv-03824, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19542).

  • February 7, 2018

    Federal Judge Dismisses UCL, Fraud Cross-Claims Against Online Marketplace

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on Feb. 6 granted an online marketplace host’s motion to dismiss counterclaims asserted against it for violation of California’s unfair competition law, breach of contract, fraud and other claims asserted by a user of the marketplace who allegedly failed to pay for or return inventory from the website, but granted the user leave to amend the claims to assert more specific factual allegations (Ouiby Inc. v. Idil Doguoglu Posey, et al., No. 17-cv-03847, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19502).

  • February 7, 2018

    Customer Alleges Airline Violated UCL By Misrepresenting Pricing

    LOS ANGELES — A customer on Feb. 2 sued Spirit Airlines Inc. in a California federal court, alleging that it violated California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and engaged in false advertising by misrepresenting that its products are the least expensive available (Nikki Giavasis v. Spirit Airlines, Inc., No. 2:18-cv-864, C.D. Calif.).

  • February 6, 2018

    California Court Finds Solar Energy Firm Did Not Need Contractor’s License

    LOS ANGELES — A California court on Feb. 1 affirmed a trial court’s dismissal of a purchaser’s class action claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and another California law against a solar energy products company, finding that the company was not required to be a licensed contractor to complete its installations (Shawn Reed v. Sunrun Inc., No. B276862, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 2, 2018 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 743).

  • February 5, 2018

    9th Circuit Reverses Dismissal Of CCRA Claims Against Bank Of America

    SAN FRANCISCO — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 1 affirmed a district court’s decision in favor of a bank on a borrower’s claims for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims, but reversed the ruling on her claim for violation of the Consumer Credit Reporting Act (CCRA), finding that a triable issue of fact exists as to whether the bank’s alleged misreporting of her credit information caused her to suffer damages and whether the bank had reasonable measures in place to ensure that incorrect information was not transmitted (Nahid Noori v. Bank of America N.A., No. 16-56082, 9th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 2575).

  • February 2, 2018

    Judge Dismisses UCL Claim, Finds Lender Did Not Interfere With Sale

    SAN FRANCISCO — After finding that a former property owner’s claim that a lender interfered with his private sale of a property by recording a notice of trustee’s sale failed, a California federal judge on Jan. 30 dismissed his claim for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) for failure to state a claim (Moshen Khaziri v. Caliber Home Loans Inc., No. 17-cv-01639, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16308).

  • January 31, 2018

    Judge Allows UCL, CUTSA Claims Related To Audiology Technology To Proceed

    LOS ANGELES — A California federal judge on Jan. 29 refused to dismiss claims for violations of the California Uniform Trade Secrets Act (CUTSA), California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims asserted by the inventor of a tele-audiology technology, who alleged that a California company and its German parent company copied her invention (Deborah M. Manchester, PH.D. v. Sivantos GMBH, et al., No. 2:17-CV-05309, C.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14108).

  • January 30, 2018

    NCAA Alleges Dealerships Violated UCL, Infringed On March Madness Mark

    LOS ANGELES — The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) on Jan. 26 sued the operators of vehicle dealerships in relation to the alleged use of its trademark, asserting causes of action for infringement and violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) (National Collegiate Athletic Association v. Ken Grody Management Inc., et al., No. 8:18-cv-00153, C.D. Calif.).