Mealey's California Section 17200

  • April 16, 2021

    Panel: D&O Insurer Has No Duty To Defend, Indemnify Against Attorney General’s Suit

    PASADENA, Calif. — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 15 affirmed a lower federal court’s ruling that held that under California Insurance Code Section 533.5, a directors and officers liability insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify its insureds against an underlying unfair competition and false advertising lawsuit brought by the California attorney general, finding that Section 533.5 “does not facially violate a party’s due process right to retain counsel.”

  • April 15, 2021

    Volkswagen Salespersons Tell 9th Circuit Class Suit Was Wrongly Dismissed

    SAN FRANCISCO — Three salespeople who allege that their business was harmed by Volkswagen’s emissions scandal tell the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in an April 9 appellant brief that a district court erred in concluding that the car maker was not their employer under California law and in granting a motion to dismiss their class employment and unfair competition law (UCL) claims.

  • April 13, 2021

    Magistrate Dismisses Woman’s UCL Claim Against Lender With Leave To Amend

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal magistrate judge on April 9 granted dismissal with leave to amend California unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims brought by one of the representative plaintiffs in a putative class action against a consumer lending company that the plaintiffs say concealed its fees while operating as an unlicensed lender because the plaintiff did not plead facts with sufficient particularity to establish timeliness or standing.

  • April 12, 2021

    Water Exclusion Bars Coverage For Water Damage At Insureds’ Property, Judge Says

    RIVERSIDE, Calif. — A California federal judge on April 2 entered summary judgment in favor of a property insurer on claims for breach of contract, bad faith and unfair business practices after determining that no coverage is owed under the policy pursuant to the policy’s water exclusion.

  • April 12, 2021

    9th Circuit Affirms UCL Case Dismissal For Lack Of Organizational Standing

    SAN FRANCISCO — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled March 31 that advocacy groups lacked organizational standing because they had not diverted resources to combat alleged false advertising by a poultry company that they claimed violated California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and another state law, affirming a California federal court’s dismissal of the case for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

  • April 09, 2021

    Judge Declines To Dismiss UCL, RICO Claims In ‘Keto’ Diet Products Lawsuit

    SAN DIEGO — A California federal judge on April 7 denied a motion to dismiss two consumers’ allegations that a software and marketing company and its owner are indirectly liable for false advertising and California unfair competition law (UCL) claims that have also been brought against an online merchant who allegedly overcharged for “keto” diet supplements.

  • April 07, 2021

    Retailer’s Voucher Class Settlement Given Final Nod; Attorney Fees Undecided

    SAN DIEGO — A federal judge in California on March 31 granted final approval of a modified voucher class settlement in a lawsuit in which a children’s clothing retailer is accused of routinely advertising false “original” prices when discounting its merchandise in violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other state laws but declined to award attorney fees until after the value of the recovery for the class can be determined.

  • April 07, 2021

    Domino’s Granted Stay Pending Appeal Of Arbitration Denial In Putative Class Suit

    SANTA ANA, Calif. — A federal judge in California on March 31 granted a pizza company’s  motion to stay a putative class complaint over truck drivers’ cell phone expenses pending appeal of the denial of its motion to compel arbitration.

  • April 06, 2021

    Panel Remands Dismissal Of Truck Drivers’ Claims As Based On Outdated Precedent

    LOS ANGELES — A California appellate panel in an opinion published April 1 reversed and remanded a ruling in favor of a trucking company on a California unfair competition law (UCL) claim because a subsequent state Supreme Court ruling altered the legal standards applicable to truck drivers’ claims that the company misclassified them as independent contractors instead of employees.

  • April 02, 2021

    Judge Dismisses UCL Claims Against Nestlé For Alleged Child Labor At Plantations

    SAN DIEGO — A California federal judge on March 30 dismissed a putative class action against Nestlé USA Inc. with leave to amend after finding the plaintiff did not plead with adequate specificity her allegations that Nestlé violated California’s unfair competition law (UCL) by fraudulently labeling its products as “sustainable” and supporting farmers while its cocoa plantations use child labor and harm the environment.

  • March 31, 2021

    Mothers Say Organic Baby Food Maker Concealed Toxic Ingredients

    SAN FRANCISCO — Two consumers on March 26 filed a putative class action in California federal court against a baby food manufacturer whose products were revealed in a congressional subcommittee report to contain heavy metals, accusing them of negligent misrepresentation and violation of California’s unfair competition law.

  • March 31, 2021

    California Supreme Court Overturns Title Insurer Immunity Ruling In UCL Dispute

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Supreme Court on March 22 overturned a state appellate court’s ruling that a title insurer was immune under provisions of the state’s insurance code from a borrower’s lawsuit alleging that the insurer violated provisions of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) by charging rates for deed delivery services that were not approved by the California insurance commissioner, ruling that title insurers are not shielded from liability for charging unauthorized rates.

  • March 29, 2021

    Class Action Alleges GEICO ‘Unfairly’ Profited From Global Coronavirus Pandemic

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — An insured filed a class action lawsuit in a federal court in California on March 25 for breach of contract, unjust enrichment, frustration of purpose and violations of California’s false advertising and unfair competition laws, alleging that although “many companies, industries, and individuals have suffered financially as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, auto insurers like GEICO have scored a windfall.”

  • March 26, 2021

    Walgreen’s $4.5M Wage, UCL Class Settlement Granted Final Approval

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal judge in California on March 24 granted final approval of a $4.5 million settlement by Walgreen Co. and Walgreen Co./Ill. (together, Walgreen) to end California wage and unfair competition law (UCL) class claims brought by a former hourly employee.

  • March 25, 2021

    Residents, Senior Living Company Reach $16.25M Settlement Of Staffing Level Claims

    OAKLAND, Calif. — Current and former residents of Aegis Senior Living Communities LLC facilities in California and Washington on March 23 filed a motion in a federal court in California seeking preliminary approval of a $16.25 million settlement to resolve their claims that the company engaged in a scheme to defraud seniors by stating that staffing levels at the facilities would be dictated by residents’ needs, in violation of state unfair competition and financial elder abuse laws.

  • March 25, 2021

    UCL Claim Dismissed In Privacy Class Action Over Weather Channel App

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A user of The Weather Channel smartphone app sufficiently alleged his privacy and unjust enrichment class claims over geolocation data collection carried out by TWC Product and Technology LLC, a California federal judge ruled March 17, finding, however, that a claim under California’s unfair competition law (UCL) merited dismissal for lack of standing.

  • March 25, 2021

    Judge: Defendant Must Provide Bureau Detailed Asset Transfer Information

    SANTA ANA, Calif. — A California federal judge on March 16 ordered a defendant allegedly involved in a student loan debt relief scheme that violated the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA) and California’s unfair competition law (UCL) to provide the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection with a sworn statement of detailed cryptocurrency and asset transfer information by March 30, granting the bureau’s request to order more detailed asset information but denying without prejudice its request for an order to show cause as to why the defendant should not be held in contempt for allegedly violating the financial accounting provisions of the court’s restraining and preliminary injunction orders.

  • March 24, 2021

    California Federal Judge Grants Summary Judgment To BMW In Deceleration Suit

    SANTA ANA, Calif. — Consumers who brought a class complaint against BMW of North America LLC for allegedly knowingly selling electric cars that would suddenly decelerate failed to establish a prima facie case for any of their claims, including that the cars had a design defect, a federal judge in California ruled March 17, granting BMW’s summary judgment motion.

  • March 24, 2021

    Judge Dismisses Putative Class Action Against Supplement Company As Preempted

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A Florida federal judge on March 8 granted a motion to dismiss a putative class action against a dietary supplement company after finding that the plaintiffs’ claims for fraud, unfair competition and deceptive practices in relation to the company’s use of the ingredient DMHA are precluded under the Food and Drug Administration’s primary jurisdiction and regulatory authority over dietary supplements.

  • March 23, 2021

    Judge Remands Fraud, UCL Claims For Warranty Violations To State Court

    LOS ANGELES — A California federal judge on March 18 remanded a pro se litigant’s state law claims against several defendants for fraud and unfair competition for allegedly invalidating a lifetime warranty on a Jeep he purchased after finding that equitable grounds support remand of his claims against one defendant that removed the complaint alleging federal bankruptcy jurisdiction.