SAN FRANCISCO - Granting in part a mattress manufacturer's motion to retain confidentiality in certain discovery materials in a consumer protection class action, a California federal magistrate judge on March 6 found that the firm had established that disclosure of certain marketing strategy materials would put it at a competitive disadvantage (Alvin Todd, et al. v. Tempur-Sealy International Inc., et al., No. 3:13-cv-04984, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27803).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California appeals panel on March 9 affirmed a lower court's ruling that a commercial general liability insurance policy's intellectual property exclusion precludes coverage for an underlying lawsuit alleging that the insured used the name and likeness of a designer, author and inventor to market its products without permission from the insured's estate (Alterra Excess and Surplus Insurance Co. v. Estate of Buckminster Fuller, No. A140453, Calif. App., 1st Dist., Div. 2; 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 216).
LOS ANGELES - A Florida man on March 6 filed a class action lawsuit in a California federal court, alleging that a mobile phone dating application company violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) when it stopped offering the app for free and began charging for its use (Billy Warner v. Tinder Inc., No. 15-1668, C.D. Calif.).
FRESNO, Calif. - A claim brought under the state's unfair competition law (UCL) remains in a dispute accusing a mortgage lender of improperly placing purchased lender placed insurance (LPI) on a home following a California judge's March 4 ruling on a motion to dismiss (Geno and Maria Gomez v. Nationstar Mortgage, No. 14-1499, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 2664).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on March 3 granted a motion for preliminary approval of a $415 million settlement with Adobe Systems Inc., Apple Inc., Google Inc. and Intel Corp. on employees' claims that the high-tech companies conspired to fix and suppress employee compensation and to restrict employee mobility by entering into agreements not to compete for one another's employees in violation of federal antitrust law (In Re: High-Tech Employee Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-2509, N.D. Calif.).
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on March 3 adopted in full a magistrate judge's January recommendation to approve a $900,000 settlement to be paid by CVS Pharmacy Inc. to end wage claims brought by distribution center workers (Leticia Ceja-Corona, et al. v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc., No. 12-1868, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25730).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California woman on March 4 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court against Lumber Liquidators Inc., claiming that the company violated state consumer fraud laws by selling laminate flooring manufactured in China that contains levels of formaldehyde that exceed limits allowed by the state (Shelley Conte, et al. v. Lumber Liquidators Inc., et al., No. 15-cv-1012-JCS, N.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A consolidated consumer class failed to establish injury-in-fact to support its antitrust claims against Netflix Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc., a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Feb. 27, upholding a district court's judgment in the retailers' favor (In Re Online DVD-Rental Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-18034, 12-16160 and 12-16183, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3095).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Feb. 27 dismissed a fraud and state unfair competition law (UCL) claim against defendants accused of breach of contract for failing to deliver computers or refund the bitcoin used to pay for the merchandise (Pete Morici v. Hashfast Technologies, et al., No. 14-87, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24251).
PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 27 reversed the denial of class certification in a lawsuit accusing Ford Motor Co. of failing to inform consumers of a known defect in the electronic throttle control system (ETC) that causes Freestyles to accelerate unexpectedly (Gene Edwards, et al. v. Ford Motor Company, No. 13-55331, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3073).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 23 declined to grant certiorari, which left standing an agreement reached in In re Managed Care Litigation that bars several physicians and physician groups from bringing claims against WellPoint Inc. in In re WellPoint, Inc. Out-of-Network "UCR" Rates Litigation under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and the Sherman Act but not from bringing certain claims under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (Medical Association of Georgia, et al. v. Wellpoint Inc., No. 14-554, U.S. Sup.).
DENVER - A Colorado federal judge on Feb. 20 declined to dismiss antitrust claims in a suit alleging that health insurers conspired with hospitals to drive multiple ambulatory surgical centers out of business (Arapahoe Surgery Center, et al. v. CIGNA Healthcare Inc., et al., No. 13-3422, D. Colo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20488).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 23 denied a petition for writ of certiorari, leaving in place a California Supreme Court decision holding that the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act (FAAAA) does not preempt a California unfair competition law (UCL) lawsuit filed by the state alleging that a trucking company misclassifies drivers as independent contractors to avoid paying payroll taxes or provide workers' compensation (Pac Anchor Transportation, et al. v. People of the State of California, ex rel. Kamala D. Harris, etc., No. 14-491, U.S. Sup.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California state court judge on Feb. 17 issued a final injunction and judgment that will provide City College of San Francisco (CCSF) a new option to pursue to secure its accreditation after a finding that the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) engaged in practices that violated the unlawful prong of the state's unfair competition law (UCL) when, in 2013, it terminated college's accreditation. The court had issued a tentative ruling in January instructing the city attorney to draft the injunction (People of the State of California ex rel. Dennis Herrera, San Francisco City Attorney v. Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, No. CGC-13-533693, Calif. Super., San Francisco Co.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 12 allowed negligence and state unfair competition law (UCL) claims to continue in a home loan modification dispute, but dismissed a claim for statutory cancellation of instruments (Charlotte Johnson, et al. v. PNC Mortgage, et al., No. 14-2976, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17485).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge dismissed multiple claims, including one brought under the state's unfair competition law (UCL), in a class action wage and labor dispute, leaving claims for meal break and rest period violations and declining to strike class allegations (Eve Miranda, et al. v. Coach Inc., et al., No. 14-2031, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18278).
SAN DIEGO - A California man on Feb. 9 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court accusing a grower of bananas of violating multiple laws, including the state's unfair competition law (UCL), by falsely representing itself to be an exemplar of environmental stewardship when in reality its production methods damage water supplies, destroy local crops and cause illness in the local population (Justin Jablonowski v. Chiquita Brands Inc., No. 15-262, S.D. Calif.).
LOS ANGELES - A California resident on Feb. 9 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court accusing Anthem Inc. of violating, among other things, the state's unfair competition law (UCL) in failing to safeguard personal information contained on the defendant's information technology (IT) systems after a massive breach of the company's systems (John Doe v. Anthem Inc., et al., No. 15-934, C.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California state unfair competition law (UCL) claim will be among those continuing after a California federal judge on Feb. 5 declined to dismiss a class action lawsuit accusing the seller of a variety of bread and muffin mixes as misleading consumers by wrongly labeling the products as ``all natural'' (Edward Musgrave v. ICC/Marie Callender's Gourmet Products Division, No. 14-2006, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14674).
LOS ANGELES - Following a bench trial, a California judge on Feb. 4 entered judgment in favor of the defendant in a suit accusing a distributor of polyethylene products of falsely advertising that its products meets the Department of Defense's (DOD) specifications and violating, among other things, the state's unfair competition law (UCL) (Caltex Plastics Inc. v. Elkay Plastics Company Inc., No. 12-10033, C.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13442).
LOS ANGELES - Just two days after Anthem Inc. announced that it "was the target of a very sophisticated external cyber attack" that exposed its customers' personal data to hackers, the health insurance provider on Feb. 5 was hit by putative class actions in California and Alabama federal courts (Samantha Kirby v. Anthem Inc., et al., No. 2:15-cv-00820, C.D. Calif.; Danny Juliano v. Anthem Inc., No. 2:15-cv-00219, N.D. Ala.).
FRESNO, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Jan. 30 for the second time dismissed a case, including a claim for violation of the state's unfair competition law (UCL), alleging that a used car company failed to supply a form showing that all of the components of the vehicle were inspected during the certification process, this time with prejudice (Patricia A. Sigala v. CarMax Auto Superstores, No. 14-1451, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11414).
CHICAGO - A defendant's request to add three counterclaims of Sherman Act violations and an affirmative defense of inequitable conduct was granted Jan. 30 by an Illinois federal judge (BSP Software LLC v. Motio Inc., No. 12-2100, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10799).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Jan. 29 declined to dismiss a putative class action case accusing a short-term car rental company of violating state law, including the unfair competition law (UCL) by setting late fees in an illegal manner (Gabriela Bayol v. Zipcar Inc., No. 14-2483, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10596).
LOS ANGELES - An attorney's suit alleging that that two principles comingled and mismanaged bank account funds, shorting him of compensation seeks in excess of $75,000, Napoli Bern Ripka & Associates argues in removing the action on Jan. 28 (Marc I. Willick v. Napoli Bern Ripka & Associates, et al., No. 5-652, C.D. Calif.).