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Tag Archives: California

Another California Court Does Backflips to Thwart Arbitration and Elevate The Class-Action Device

Posted in Arbitration

The hostility of some California courts to arbitration—and their resistance to preemption under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA)—has produced nearly three decades of U.S. Supreme Court reversals. The most recent is AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, which held that the FAA preempted the Discover Bank rule, under which the California Supreme Court had blocked enforcement… Continue Reading

What’s Going On With Class Actions Alleging That Businesses That Record Customer-Service Calls Are Violating California’s Invasion of Privacy Act?

Posted in Class Action Trends

Since 2006, companies based outside California have been alert to the potential burdens of class actions under California’s Invasion of Privacy Act (“CIPA”), Cal. Penal Code § 630 et seq. The laws of most states, as well as federal law, allow telephone calls to be recorded with the consent of one party to the call…. Continue Reading

Recent Appellate Decisions Underscore That Wage and Hour Class Actions are Alive and Well in California Despite Brinker

Posted in Class Certification, Employment

Some observers of California wage-and-hour class actions contended that the Brinker v. Superior Court—a key decision we have discussed in the past—had sounded the death knell for class certification in those cases. of California wage and hour class actions. Not so fast, according to the California Courts of Appeal, which have, in four published opinions,… Continue Reading

Annual Report on “Judicial Hellholes”

Posted in Class Action Trends

The American Tort Reform Association has released its annual report on “Judicial Hellholes”—a term it popularized for jurisdictions in which defendants often contend that they can’t get a fair shake. This year’s report identifies California, Louisiana, New York City, West Virginia, Madison & St. Clair Counties (Illinois), and South Florida as the most unfavorable jurisdictions…. Continue Reading

Will California Strike Again? The Latest Word From the California Supreme Court On Enforcing Arbitration Agreements

Posted in Arbitration

The California Supreme Court has a long history of inventing new rules—either from common law or as “glosses” on statutes—to invalidate arbitration agreements entered into by consumers and employees. For example, in 2005, that court announced a new unconscionability rule—the“Discover Bank” doctrine, which was named after one of the parties to the case—that effectively blocked… Continue Reading

“Food Court” Rejects Class Action Alleging That Fruit Newtons Labels Are Misleading

Posted in Motions Practice

Most people are familiar with Fig Newtons, an iconic cookie that has been around for over a century (at least according to its Wikipedia entry).  There are many other popular versions of Newtons—albeit of more recent vintage—such as raspberry and strawberry Newtons.  These fruit Newtons drew the ire of plaintiff Monique Manchouck, who filed a… Continue Reading

Where Will the Zip Code Class Actions Be Filed Next?

Posted in Class Action Trends

Over the past two years, a big growth area for plaintiffs’ lawyers has been cases challenging the use of zip codes or other identifying information by merchants that process credit-card transactions. In 2011, the California Supreme Court held in Pineda v. Williams-Sonoma Stores that a zip code constitutes “personal identification information” under California’s Song-Beverly Credit… Continue Reading

Are State-Law Claims for Violating Federal Food Labeling Law Preempted?

Posted in Class Action Trends, Motions Practice

The federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act (“FDCA”)—along with the implementing regulations promulgated by the FDA—sets out a detailed national standard for much of what appears on food and beverage labeling. See 21 U.S.C. §§ 301, et seq.; 21 C.F.R. §§ 101, et seq.; Pom Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co., 679 F.3d 1170, 1175 (9th… Continue Reading

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Files Amicus Brief On Arbitration Issues In Key California Supreme Court Case

Posted in Arbitration

In the wake of AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, the California Supreme Court granted review in three cases involving significant arbitration issues, including key questions about whether the Federal Arbitration Act preempts California law concerning the enforceability of arbitration agreements. My colleagues and I have filed amicus briefs on behalf of the Chamber of Commerce… Continue Reading

California Trial Court Rejects “Trial by Formula” Approach to False-Advertising Class Action and Sets Aside Verdict

Posted in Class Certification, Motions Practice

In state courts, sometimes you lose even when you win. In a recent false-advertising class action, a California Superior Court entered an order concluding that the testimony of the plaintiffs’ expert—who was the linchpin of the case for class certification and on the merits—was inadmissible, which meant that the defendant was entitled to judgment as… Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Grants Review In Employment Arbitration Case

Posted in Arbitration, Employment

The California Supreme Court granted review last week in Franco v. Arakelian Enterprises Inc., No. S207660, in which the California Court of Appeal had refused to enforce an agreement to arbitrate on an individual basis in the context of a wage-and-hour class action. For more on Franco, please see our prior post. The California Supreme… Continue Reading

Privacy and Mobile Apps: The California AG Speaks Out

Posted in Class Action Trends

In recent months, we have seen growing interest in potential privacy issues in the context of mobile applications. Earlier this month, California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris released an official report—“Privacy On the Go: Recommendations for the Mobile Ecosystem”—with new privacy recommendations for the mobile industry. The report, while providing a “template” for best practices,… Continue Reading

Brinker’s Impact on Certification of Meal-Break Class Actions in California

Posted in Class Certification, Employment, Predominance

Class actions alleging that employers’ meal-break policies violate California law have long been a favorite of the plaintiffs’ bar.  Earlier this year, however, the California Supreme Court handed employers a victory in Brinker Restaurant Corp v. Superior Court, 53 Cal. 4th 1004 (Cal. 2012), holding that the obligation under the California Labor Code to provide… Continue Reading

California Court Of Appeal Strikes Down Arbitration Agreement In Wage-And-Hour Class Action Despite Concepcion

Posted in Arbitration, Employment

A California appellate court weighed in last week with another effort to circumvent the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion. In Franco v. Arakelian Enterprises, Inc. (pdf), a panel of the Court of Appeal in Los Angeles affirmed an order refusing to enforce an employee’s agreement to arbitrate disputes with his… Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Grants Rehearing En Banc In Kilgore v. KeyBank To Determine Whether California May Exempt Claims For “Public” Injunctions From Arbitration

Posted in Arbitration

In an effort to avoid the enforcement of arbitration agreements after AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion, the plaintiffs’ bar has sought to invoke provisions of California’s Unfair Competition Law and Consumers Legal Remedies Act that allow for consumers to pursue claims for injunctive relief on behalf of the “general public.” They point to two pre-Concepcion decisions… Continue Reading