Consumer Protection

  • April 12, 2024

    Feds Say Ga. Apartments Denied Wheelchair Accommodation

    Federal prosecutors on Thursday hit a Savannah, Georgia, apartment complex, a local housing authority and other defendants with a Fair Housing Act complaint alleging they denied a disabled resident an accessible apartment in spite of her repeated requests that they accommodate her disability.

  • April 12, 2024

    Maine AG Sues Monsanto Over PCB Contamination

    Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey sued Monsanto on Friday seeking to recover damages for the company's alleged contamination of the state's waterways with polychlorinated biphenyls, a dangerous chemical compound known to accumulate and persist in humans and the environment.

  • April 12, 2024

    Abbott Labs Gets Price Claims Tossed In Baby Formula MDL

    An Illinois federal judge on Friday threw out a suit from parents alleging that Abbott Laboratories benefited from increased prices during a shortage of baby formula kicked off when one of its facilities was shut down, saying they haven't shown that the company's profits during that time were unjustly retained.

  • April 12, 2024

    Bimbo Beats False Ad Suit Over 'All Butter' Entenmann's Cake

    Bimbo Bakeries defeated a proposed class action alleging its Entenmann's brand "All Butter" loaf cake is misleading to customers since the butter taste is partially sourced from artificial vanillin, after a Maryland federal judge said Friday the claims are preempted by the U.S. Food Drug and Cosmetic Act.

  • April 12, 2024

    Make Clear Neutrality Exempts Content Storage, Akamai Says

    Akamai Technologies is asking the FCC to make it crystal clear in the net neutrality orders that are set to be voted on this month that information storing agreements between internet service providers and content delivery networks are still above board.

  • April 12, 2024

    Vermont Attys Can't Be Sued In Connecticut, Court Says

    Two Vermont firms that handled the sale of a Connecticut man's second home near a Vermont ski town cannot be sued in Connecticut because the lawyers' business models and the disputed cash transfers that spurred the litigation were not sufficiently directed toward Connecticut, a three-judge appellate panel ruled on Friday.

  • April 12, 2024

    Mercedes-Benz Gets Fraud Claims Clipped In Brake Suit

    A Washington federal judge has thrown out the bulk of a man's claims in a proposed class action alleging Mercedes-Benz USA LLC sold vehicles with defective brake sleeves that can cause corrosion, finding he hasn't adequately pled that the company fraudulently hid the existence of the alleged defect.

  • April 12, 2024

    Zoll Says 'Cookie-Cutter' Hack Claims Don't Show Harm

    Zoll Medical Corp. is asking a Boston federal judge to toss a proposed class action brought by medical device customers whose personal information was released during a ransomware attack last year and an earlier data breach in 2019, arguing the consumers weren't actually injured.

  • April 12, 2024

    'Ghost Gun' Cos. Ink $1.3M Deal To End Philly's Safety Suit

    The city of Philadelphia filed a $1.3 million settlement agreement Friday with two companies that sold kits and parts for so-called "ghost guns," touting it as a victory in reducing the number of unregulated firearms in the region.

  • April 11, 2024

    Proposed BIPA Penalty Reforms Advance In Ill. Legislature

    The Illinois Senate on Thursday passed legislation that would update the Biometric Information Privacy Act as well as tweak its liability guidelines, a clarification that proponents say is needed to protect businesses from costly, frivolous litigation.

  • April 11, 2024

    CFPB Says Credit Card Shares Disqualifying In 5th Circ. Case

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sparred Thursday with a coalition of trade groups over recusal standards in their Fifth Circuit lawsuit challenging the agency's new $8 credit card late fee rule, arguing that a judge's ownership of stock in a major card-issuing bank ought to be disqualifying in itself.

  • April 11, 2024

    Gerber, Others Must Face Calif. MDL Over Baby Food Toxins

    A group of baby food manufacturers, including Gerber Products Co., Hain Celestial Group Inc. and Beech-Nut Nutrition Co., must face consolidated lawsuits alleging that heavy metals in their products cause autism spectrum disorder and other conditions in California federal court, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ruled Thursday.

  • April 11, 2024

    FTC Curtails Treatment Provider's Sharing Of Health Data

    The Federal Trade Commission took its latest step Thursday to crack down on the mishandling of sensitive health information, announcing a settlement that requires a New York-based alcohol addiction treatment service to obtain affirmative consent before sharing this data with third parties and bars the company from disclosing this information for advertising purposes.

  • April 11, 2024

    FTC's Bedoya Looking For Market Power In Pricing Cases

    Federal Trade Commissioner Alvaro Bedoya said Thursday he is most interested in bringing potential cases under the Robinson Patman Act when a company is using its market power to gain an unfair advantage over smaller rivals.

  • April 11, 2024

    Auto Tech Group Floats Bill To End Abusers' Car Access

    An auto technology group is pressing Congress to pass legislation that would make it easier for domestic violence survivors to cut off abusers' access to vehicles that use advanced wireless connectivity and could be used to track abused partners.

  • April 11, 2024

    Orrick To Pay $8M To Settle Data Breach Litigation

    A proposed class of data-breach victims asked a California federal judge Thursday to greenlight an $8 million settlement with Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP in litigation over a March 2023 data breach that purportedly exposed Social Security numbers and other personal information of more than 638,000 individuals.

  • April 11, 2024

    FCC Says Satellite Co.'s Dispute With Backer Belongs In Court

    The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday told a satellite company and its financial backer to take their squabble over a withdrawn enforcement petition to court, rejecting BIU LLC's bid to reopen an administrative proceeding first prompted by Spectrum Five.

  • April 11, 2024

    FTC Sends More Refunds To Customers Throttled By AT&T

    The Federal Trade Commission said Thursday it was sending out nearly $6.3 million worth of partial refunds to AT&T customers under a 2019 settlement the carrier reached for throttling their unlimited data plans.

  • April 11, 2024

    Price-Fixing Cartel Self Reporting On 'Steady Uptick,' Panel Says

    U.S. and European antitrust enforcers touted a turnaround Thursday in the number of companies self-reporting price-fixing, bid-rigging and market allocation schemes in the search for "leniency" from financial and criminal penalties over the last three years.

  • April 11, 2024

    Shops Fight Altria Unit's Bid To Block Flavored Vape Sales

    A group of smoke shops urged a California federal judge to reject a bid by vape manufacturer NJOY, a subsidiary of tobacco giant Altria Group, Inc., seeking to block the retailers from selling Elf Bar branded flavored vapes, arguing that consumers won't flock to NJOY's tobacco flavored products even if Elf Bar is off the market.

  • April 11, 2024

    FTC 'Hopeful' Merger Judges Can See Past Market Definition

    The Federal Trade Commission's top antitrust enforcer emphasized Thursday that the FTC and Justice Department's new merger guidelines could facilitate transaction challenges based solely on "direct" competitive effects, regardless of what market definition numbers indicate.

  • April 11, 2024

    Visa Beats Some Merchant Claims In Antitrust MDL

    A New York federal judge has trimmed claims lodged by Home Depot and other merchants against Visa and several banks in sprawling multidistrict antitrust litigation dating back to 2005 over network rules forcing merchants to accept the companies' cards.

  • April 11, 2024

    Ernest Health Hit With Suit After Cybercriminal Data Breach

    A group of former Ernest Health Inc. patients has hit the Texas-based hospital system with a proposed class action after a notorious group of cybercriminals breached the company's systems, saying that the company should've done more to protect patient data in a Thursday complaint.

  • April 11, 2024

    FDA Commissioner Says Congress Must Act On Hemp, CBD

    The commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Thursday that the agency did not consider hemp-derived CBD safe enough to be sold lawfully as a dietary supplement, and urged Congress to create a new pathway to regulate the substance.

  • April 11, 2024

    NCAA Athletes Can't Get MDL Over Compensation Rules

    The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation denied the request of NCAA athletes to centralize two suits accusing the organization and five major college sports conferences of exercising a monopoly over labor in Division I sports by not allowing student-athletes to be compensated for their performances.

Expert Analysis

  • What To Know About OCC Proposals For Bank Merger Review

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    The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency's proposed changes to the agency's bank merger review process could exacerbate industry concerns with long and unpredictable processing periods because the proposal is ambiguous with respect to how the OCC will view certain transactions, say attorneys at Simpson Thacher.

  • Using Arbitration And Class Waivers As Privacy Suit Tools

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    Amid a surge in data breach class actions over the last few years, several federal court decisions indicate that arbitration clauses and class action waiver provisions can be possible alternatives to public court battles and potentially reduce the costs of privacy litigation, say Mark Olthoff and Courtney Klaus at Polsinelli.

  • 6 Pointers For Attys To Build Trust, Credibility On Social Media

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    In an era of information overload, attorneys can use social media strategically — from making infographics to leveraging targeted advertising — to cut through the noise and establish a reputation among current and potential clients, says Marly Broudie at SocialEyes Communications.

  • 5 Lessons For SaaS Companies After Blackbaud Data Breach

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    Looking at the enforcement actions that software-as-a-service provider Blackbaud resolved with state attorneys general, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Trade Commission in the past year can help SaaS companies manage these increasingly common forms of data breaches, say attorneys at Orrick.

  • Class Actions At The Circuit Courts: February Lessons

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    In this month's review of class action appeals, Mitchell Engel at Shook Hardy discusses five notable circuit court decisions on topics from property taxes to veteran's rights — and provides key takeaways for counsel on issues including class representative intervention, wage-and-hour dispute evidence and ascertainability requirements.

  • A Post-Mortem Analysis Of Stroock's Demise

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    After the dissolution of 147-year-old firm Stroock late last year shook up the legal world, a post-mortem analysis of the data reveals a long list of warning signs preceding the firm’s collapse — and provides some insight into how other firms might avoid the same disastrous fate, says Craig Savitzky at Leopard Solutions.

  • Predicting DeFi Regulations At Home And Abroad In 2024

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    Though decentralized finance has advocates on both sides of the Atlantic in figures like U.S. SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce and U.K. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, DeFi in 2024 seems likely to be folded into existing regulatory frameworks in the U.K. and EU, while anti-crypto scrutiny may discourage DeFi’s growth in the U.S., say Daniel Csefalvay and Eric Martin at BCLP.

  • Retailers Must Be Mindful Of Sale Ads As Class Actions Rise

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    A recent uptick in class actions filed against retailers over a breadth of allegedly deceptive pricing practices — including misleading reference prices for sales and discounts offered on a perpetual basis — show no sign of slowing down, indicating that class counsel are laser-focused on challenging advertising strategies, say Louis DiLorenzo and Paavana Kumar at Davis+Gilbert.

  • NY's Revamped Card Surcharge Ban Is Unique Among States

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    Newly revised New York legislation bolsters the state's ban on credit card surcharges, potentially reinvigorating similar laws across the country despite the fact that many of them have been ruled unconstitutional, say Tom Witherspoon and Audrey Carroll at Stinson.

  • Understanding SEC's Focus Amid Lack Of Final AI Rules

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    Although the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's proposed rules to govern artificial intelligence are likely far from being finalized, understanding existing regulatory provisions that could address AI risks with respect to development, disclosure, compliance and data protection could help firms anticipate and avoid pitfalls, say attorneys at Skadden.

  • Legislative And Litigation Trends In Environmental Advertising

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    Companies that tout their products' environmental benefits can significantly reduce the risk that they will face allegations of greenwashing by staying up to date on related Federal Trade Commission guidance, state requirements and litigation trends, say Raqiyyah Pippins and Kelsie Sicinski at Arnold & Porter.

  • What's On The Horizon In Attorney General Enforcement

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    A look at recent attorney general actions, especially in the areas of antitrust and artificial intelligence, can help inform businesses on what they should expect in terms of enforcement trends as 10 attorney general races play out in 2024, say attorneys at Cozen O'Connor.

  • Considering The Logical Extremes Of Your Legal Argument

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    Recent oral arguments in the federal election interference case against former President Donald Trump highlighted the age-old technique of extending an argument to its logical limit — a principle that is still important for attorneys to consider in preparing their cases, says Reuben Guttman at Guttman Buschner.

  • Reducing The Risk Of PFAS False Advertising Class Actions

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    A wave of class actions continues to pummel products that allegedly contain per- or polyfluoroalkyl substances, with plaintiffs challenging advertising that they say misleads consumers by implying an absence of PFAS — but there are steps companies can take to minimize risk, say attorneys at Keller and Heckman.

  • CFPB Overdraft Rule Could Mean Big Shift In Banking Biz

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    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed "to close a longstanding loophole" in the Truth in Lending Act by changing how it regulates overdraft fees, but underneath the headline-grabbing proposal is a foundational shift in how the bureau views overdraft services, say attorneys at Katten.

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