Mealey's California Section 17200

  • October 19, 2020

    Judge Approves $18.5M Settlement Over Wells Fargo’s Loan Modification Denials

    SAN FRANCISCO — A federal judge in California on Oct. 12 entered final approval of an $18.5 million settlement for a nationwide class of borrowers who allege that they were denied loan modifications under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) by Wells Fargo Bank NA as a result of an algorithmic error in its software glitch in the lender’s software, finding that the terms of the settlement were fair and reasonable (Alicia Hernandez, et al. v. Wells Fargo Bank NA, et al., No. 18-7354, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188669).

  • October 19, 2020

    Judge Dismisses Amended UCL, Other Claims With Prejudice In Billing Practice Dispute

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 9 dismissed with prejudice plaintiffs’ amended claims for violation for California’s unfair competition law (UCL), fraud and negligent misrepresentation in their lawsuit challenging the defendant’s billing practices involving loans for foreclosure sales (Najarian Holdings LLC, et al. v. CoreVest American Finance Lender LLC, No. 20-00799, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188667).

  • October 19, 2020

    Judge Allows Construction Worker To Amend His UCL Claims In Employment Dispute

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 14 granted a construction worker’s motion for leave to amend his second amended complaint to bring California unfair competition law (UCL) claims on behalf of himself and all similarly situated employees of a “staffing solutions” company and granted the company’s motion to dismiss Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) and wrongful termination claims (Peter Albers v. Yarbrough World Solutions, LLC, et al., No. 19-05896, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 190545).

  • October 19, 2020

    Federal Judge Dismisses DNA-Sequence Analysis Company’s Claim For UCL Damages

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 16 dismissed a genetic sequence analysis company’s claim for damages under California’s unfair competition law (UCL), trade secrets claim for exemplary damages and fees and fraud claim in a dispute against a former business partner but allowed the company’s claim for exemplary damages and attorney fees under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) against certain defendants to proceed (Quintara Biosciences, Inc. v. Ruifeng Biztech Inc., et al., No. 20-04808, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 192419).

  • October 16, 2020

    Federal Judge Dismisses DNA-Sequence Analysis Company’s Claim For UCL Damages

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 16 dismissed a genetic sequence analysis company’s claim for damages under California’s unfair competition law (UCL), trade secrets claim for exemplary damages and fees and fraud claim in a dispute against a former business partner but allowed the company’s claim for exemplary damages and attorney fees under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) against certain defendants to proceed (Quintara Biosciences, Inc. v. Ruifeng Biztech Inc., et al., No. 20-04808, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 192419).

  • October 16, 2020

    Federal Judge Grants Apple’s Motion To Dismiss UCL Claim In Defective Laptop Suit

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 13 granted Apple Inc.’s motion to dismiss a California unfair competition law (UCL) claim and other claims to the extent that they seek an injunction, restitution or other equitable relief, finding that plaintiffs failed to allege that they lack an adequate remedy at law in their class action complaint brought on behalf of purchasers of purportedly defective MacBook laptops with butterfly keyboards (In re MacBook Keyboard Litigation, No. 18-02813, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 190508).

  • October 16, 2020

    Judge Refuses To Enjoin Trustee’s Sale, Tosses Regulation X, UCL Suit Against Lender

    SANTA ANA, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 13 denied a borrower’s ex parte application for a temporary restraining order to enjoin a trustee's sale of his Midway City, Calif., home in his lawsuit alleging that the lender committed unlawful conduct concerning a mortgage loan secured by the property, dismissing his Regulation X claim with prejudice and his California unfair competition law (UCL) claim without prejudice (John Fouse v. Core Lending, Inc., No. 20-1369, C.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189597).

  • October 15, 2020

    Judge Refuses To Dismiss UCL Suit Alleging Pabst Falsely Advertised Beer’s Origin

    SACRAMENTO — A federal judge in California on Sept. 30 denied Pabst Brewing Company LLC’s motion to dismiss a class action alleging that it violated California’s unfair competition law (UCL) by falsely advertising that its Olympia Beer is brewed using artesian water from Olympia, Wash., finding that the plaintiff plausibly asserts that a reasonable consumer would likely be deceived by the product labeling (Brendan Peacock v. Pabst Brewing Company, LLC, No. 18-00568, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 182404).

  • October 15, 2020

    Employee, Employer Announce Settlement Of UCL Lawsuit Alleging Radiation Exposure

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A radiology technologist and his employer on Sept. 29 indicated that they reached a settlement in the employee’s lawsuit brought under California’s unfair competition law (UCL) against the employer and his supervisor eight days after a federal judge in California found that the supervisor was fraudulently joined because the employee failed to establish a UCL claim against him as an individual defendant (Hasibullah Abdali v. Agiliti Surgical Inc., et al., No. 19-02362, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 173989).

  • October 15, 2020

    Sealed Rehearing Bid In Copyright Preemption Row Denied By 9th Circuit

    SAN FRANCISCO — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 28 denied panel rehearing and rehearing en banc of findings issued in August that Oracle America Inc.’s allegations that Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. (HPE) violated California’s unfair competition law (UCL) are preempted by federal copyright law (Oracle America Inc. v. Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, No. 19-15506, 9th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 30835).

  • October 14, 2020

    Judge: Unfair Business Case Against Costco Related To Sale Of Roundup Fails

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 8 dismissed a lawsuit brought by a customer who sued Costco Wholesale Corp. alleging unfair business practices in connection with its sale of the herbicide Roundup, which contains the active ingredient glyphosate.  The judge ruled that the plaintiff failed to “plausibly allege Costco personally participated in and exercised unbridled control over an unfair practice” (Paul Taylor v. Costco Wholesale Corporation, No. 20-655, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 187348).

  • October 12, 2020

    9th Circuit: FDCA Does Not Preempt UCL Claims Against CVS In Product Label Dispute

    PASADENA, Calif. — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 9 found that the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) does not preempt a consumer’s California unfair competition law (UCL) and Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) claims against CVS Health Corp., reversing and remanding a lower federal court’s dismissal of a putative class action alleging that CVS’s glucosamine-based supplements failed to provide their advertised benefits (James Kroessler v. CVS Health Corporation, No. 19-55671, 9th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 32061).

  • October 01, 2020

    Judge:  Glyphosate Case Against Home Depot Partially Dismissed, But May Be Amended

    LOS ANGELES — A federal judge in California on Sept. 18 partially dismissed a glyphosate lawsuit against Home Depot U.S.A. Inc., but ruled that the plaintiff could amend his complaint because Home Depot is asking the court to rely on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's factual "determination" that glyphosate is not a carcinogen (James Weeks v. Home Depot U.S.A. Inc., No. 19-6780, C.D. Calif.).

  • October 01, 2020

    Judge: Employee Fails To Plead UCL Claim Against Supervisor As Individual

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Sept. 21 denied a radiology technologist's motion to remand his lawsuit brought under California's unfair competition law (UCL) against his employer and supervisor, finding that he failed to establish a UCL claim against his supervisor as an individual defendant and, as a result, he was fraudulently joined (Hasibullah Abdali v. Agiliti Surgical Inc., et al., No. 19-02362, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 173989).

  • September 30, 2020

    Contractor Sues 3 Insurers Over Coverage For Defects In Fire Sprinkler System

    SAN FRANCISCO — A general contractor accuses three insurers in a Sept. 25 complaint filed in a California federal court of breaching their contract and acting in bad faith in denying a defense for claims of alleged damages related to a fire sprinkler system caused by allegedly defective construction (Build Group, Inc. v. Rockhill Insurance Company, et al., No. 20-6728, N.D. Calif.).

  • September 29, 2020

    Consumer Class Certified In Dispute Over Recyclability Of Keurig Coffee Pods

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Sept. 21 certified a class of consumers who purchase coffee pods for use with Keurig Green Mountain Inc.'s coffee makers and accuse the company of violating California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other state laws by marketing its K-Cups as recyclable even though less than 60 percent of recycling facilities will accept the product and their size prevents them from being properly sorted by recycling programs (Kathleen Smith v. Keurig Green Mountain, Inc., No. 18-6690, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 172826).

  • September 29, 2020

    Judge Keeps CVS Infant Fever Medicine Class Suit In Federal Court

    SAN FRANCISCO — A pharmacy chain accused in a putative class complaint of violating California laws, including the unfair competition law (UCL), charging more for fever and pain medicine labeled for infants than the same product labeled for children, showed that the amount in controversy exceeds the Class Action Fairness Act's (CAFA) $5 million threshold, a federal magistrate judge in California ruled Sept. 17 (Danielle Lokey v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc., No. 20-4782, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 170690).

  • September 24, 2020

    Judge Dismisses Dispute Over Coverage For 600 Construction Defect Claims

    FRESNO, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Sept. 22 dismissed a contribution and subrogation lawsuit brought by two insurers against Clarendon National Insurance Co. concerning coverage for 600 underlying construction defect claims and suits because there is a lack of subject matter jurisdiction (United Specialty Insurance Company, et al. v. Clarendon National Insurance Company, No. 19-1715, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 174054).

  • September 16, 2020

    Judge Declines To Dismiss Ex-Employee's Challenge To Juul's Severance Agreement

    SAN FRANCISCO — A federal judge in California on Sept. 11 granted in part and denied in part e-cigarette maker Juul Labs Inc.'s motion to dismiss an ex-employee's whistleblower complaint against it and to strike parts of her complaint, finding that while most of her allegations failed to state a claim, she presented an argument that Juul violated California law by offering her pay after termination if she waived her right to bring certain claims against the company (Marcie Hamilton v. Juul Labs Inc., No. 20-3710, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166718).

  • September 16, 2020

    Protein Bar False Advertising, UCL Class Suit Survives Dismissal Motion

    SAN DIEGO — A putative class complaint accusing a protein bar maker of falsely stating nutritional facts in violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other state laws may proceed because the lead plaintiff alleged economic loss, a federal judge in California ruled Sept. 10, also rejecting the bar maker's allegation of preemption (Brittany Sebastian, et al. v. ONE Brands LLC, No. 20-9, S.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166518).