Did you know that there was a class-action lawsuit after Super Bowl XLV? The game was played at Cowboys Stadium (now known as AT&T Stadium) in Dallas, Texas, between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers. The litigation arose out of a temporary-seating debacle: the full complement of temporary seats was not installed in time, resulting in some ticketholders being left without seats and others being relocated. There was also another group of ticketholders who complained about a restricted view from their seats even though they did not receive the lower, restricted-view ticket price. On the field, the Packers defeated the Steelers 31-25. In the courtroom, the plaintiffs’ bid for class certification suffered the same fate as the Steelers. A look at the Fifth Circuit’s opinion in Ibe v. Jones, 836 F.3d 516 (5th Cir. 2016), provides some valuable insights.
Michael J. Zbiegien, Jr.
Mike has represented companies in nation-wide class actions, including matters related to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, consumer issues, employment issues, and insurance rates. In addition, Mike has experience in disputes related to technology issues, such as IT architecture, intellectual property, social media and cybersecurity issues. Mike also represents businesses and individuals in lawsuits related to contract disputes, mergers and acquisitions disputes, noncompete agreements and restrictive covenants, business valuation disputes, UCC issues, and commercial leases.
Four Thoughts on Pepsi, Where’s My Jet?
Over the holidays, I enjoyed watching Pepsi, Where’s My Jet?, the Netflix four-episode documentary about John Leonard’s attempt to claim a Harrier fighter jet through the “Pepsi Stuff” promotion during the 1990s. Pepsi ultimately prevailed in the litigation that ensued when the soft-drink company denied Leonard’s claim. See Leonard v. Pepsico, Inc., 88 F. Supp.2d 116 (S.D.N.Y. 1999). Here are four thoughts that I had on the series as someone who practices consumer litigation.…
Dr. Oz Suit Shows Not All Class Actions Result in Millions of Dollars
There is a public perception that class actions result in multimillion-dollar liability for the defendants. The recent settlement of Woodard v. Labrada, a case in which TV’s Dr. Mehmet Oz was originally named as a defendant, shows that is not always the case. The suit alleged misrepresentations regarding certain weight-loss supplements manufactured by Labrada Bodybuilding Nutrition, Inc., which the plaintiffs claimed Dr. Oz received compensation to promote on his TV show. After six years of litigation, Labrada — the only remaining defendant (the plaintiffs dismissed the allegations against Dr. Oz and other media defendants) — agreed to a settlement that requires the payment of just $625,000.
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No More Special Arbitration-Waiver Rules
On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Morgan v. Sundance, Inc., overturned the arbitration-specific waiver rules in nine circuits that had held a finding of prejudice was essential to determining whether a party had waived its right to arbitrate. Instead, courts should apply “ordinary procedural rules” — such as the federal law that waiver is the intentional relinquishment or abandonment of a known right (without a prejudice requirement) — to determine whether an arbitration agreement is enforceable.
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Plaintiffs’ Standing to Assert FCRA Violations Dealt Another Blow
The Eighth Circuit’s recent decision in Schumacher v. SC Data Center, Inc. provides guidance on when alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act do not constitute a concrete injury sufficient to confer standing under the Supreme Court’s TransUnion LLC v. Ramirez decision. Given class-action plaintiffs’ fondness for claims seeking statutory damages, the potential ramifications of TransUnion — which was issued last summer and cast further doubt on whether plaintiffs have standing to recover statutory damages for technical violations of the FCRA and other statutes — have been a hot topic among the class-action bar. In fact, an entire panel discussion at this year’s ABA National Institute on Class Actions was devoted to TransUnion.
TAKEAWAY: While the full impact of TransUnion remains to be seen, Schumacher shows that plaintiffs may not have standing to pursue violations of the FCRA’s requirements that employers provide information to prospective employees.…
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Introducing Taft Class Action & Consumer Insights
Welcome to Taft’s Class Action & Consumer Insights blog. Here, we will discuss developments in class actions and consumer statutes that are frequently the subject of class actions, such as the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and various state-law consumer-protection statutes. We hope you enjoy.
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