Court of Appeal Clarifies Requirements For Pleading CLRA and UCL Claims

On September 23, 2009, the California Court of Appeal in Morgan v. AT&T Mobility reversed a state trial court and upheld as sufficient allegations against AT&T Mobility based on its selling a phone that soon became obsolete after sale, for violations of the state’s Unfair Competition Law, fraud and the Consumers Legal Remedies Act The trial …

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Supreme Court Denies Rehearing In Tobacco II

The California Supreme Court on a 4-3 vote decided not to grant rehearing or reconsider its decision in the Tobacco II litigation, meaning that proceeding shall soon be remanded back to San Diego Superior Court.  In addition, to the extent practitioners were hoping for certain clarifications or possibly reconsideration of that decision, it will not be …

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More Information on Tobacco II

There have been several commentaries issued by large defense law firms on the impact of the Tobacco II decision on pending and future class action litigation.  The following is several links to recent commentaries: (Web Archive copy) (no longer exists)

California Court of Appeal Provides Enhanced Remedies For Seniors

In Clark v. Superior Court (Nat’l Western Life Ins. Co.), ___ Cal.App.4th ___ (May 21, 2009), the Court of Appeal held that Civil Code section 3345, which provides for trebling the relief sought for senior citizens, applies in UCL cases. The Court referenced the recent Tobacco II ruling (see prior post) as supporting the importance …

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CLG Prevails in Arbitration

The CLG, representing a class of senior citizens, recently won a significant arbitration award against a senior housing group regarding up front application fees.  Due to the fact it is an arbitration, the terms of the award are confidential.

Landmark Supreme Court Decision Reaffirms Consumer Protections Under the UCL

On May 18, 2009, the California Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in In Re Tobacco II Cases, S147435. In a 4-3 decision, the Court held that for a fraudulent business practice claim under the State’s Unfair Competition Law, Bus. & Prof. Code Section 17200 et seq., as amended by Proposition 64 in 2004, the class representative needs to plead and prove actual reliance to satisfy the standing requirement of 17204, but the class members do not.

In addition, the representative is not required to plead and prove individualized reliance on specific misrepresentations, particularly where statements are part of an extensive and long-term advertising campaign. The following summarizes several highlights from that opinion:

“We therefore conclude that Proposition 64 was not intended to, and does not, impose section 17204’s standing requirements on absent class members in a UCL class action where class requirements have otherwise been found to exist.”

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