Consumer Protection

  • May 23, 2024

    Sunsetting Section 230 Gains Traction On Both Sides Of Aisle

    Everyone at Wednesday's House subcommittee hearing, from left to right, seemed to agree that it's time to ditch the Communications Decency Act's hotly contested Section 230, which shields online platforms from liability for content posted by third parties.

  • May 22, 2024

    ATM Plaintiffs Must Share New Data In Visa, Mastercard Suit

    A D.C. federal judge ordered ATM operator plaintiffs on Wednesday to turn over updated data showing average interchange fees and transaction surcharges at the center of a discovery dispute in their long-running class action against Visa and Mastercard, telling the plaintiffs that she wanted to err on the side of "liberal discovery."

  • May 22, 2024

    Antitrust Judge Questions Apple's Phil Schiller On New Fees

    A California federal judge deciding whether Apple has complied with her ban on App Store anti-steering rules questioned Apple fellow Phil Schiller on Wednesday on Apple's new program imposing 27% fees on out-of-app transactions, saying "all the new program does is maintain the anti-competitive environment" for the company's benefit.

  • May 22, 2024

    Zillow Trade Practices Case Meets Skeptical Conn. Judge

    A federal judge in Connecticut on Wednesday seemed skeptical of a real estate sales associate's proposed class action complaint against Zillow Inc., suggesting that the website's "Zestimates" of home values are protected by the First Amendment during a summary judgment hearing on the sole remaining claim in the dispute.

  • May 22, 2024

    Ga. Lender Asks Panel To Free It From Unsolicited Check Case

    A Georgia lending institution asked the Georgia Court of Appeals on Wednesday to reverse a trial court's decision not to free it from a lawsuit alleging it violated the Georgia Fair Business Practices Act by sending out an unsolicited live check that was stolen and cashed by an unknown party.

  • May 22, 2024

    Mich. Judge Not Satisfied By Atty's Letter Over Flint PR Stunt

    The federal judge overseeing Flint, Michigan, water crisis cases isn't satisfied with a California attorney's letter denying involvement in an alleged smear campaign targeting a lawyer for Flint children, saying Wednesday that if the attorney doesn't provide more substantive information, she will be referred to the State Bar of California.

  • May 22, 2024

    Justices' CFPB Alliance May Save SEC Courts, Not Chevron

    A four-justice concurrence to the U.S. Supreme Court's decision upholding the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's unique funding scheme last week carries implications for other cases pending before the court that challenge the so-called administrative state, or the permanent cadre of regulatory agencies and career government enforcers who hold sway over vast swaths of American economic life.

  • May 22, 2024

    1st Circ. Affirms UBS Win In Puerto Rico Pension Fight

    The First Circuit said public pensioners in Puerto Rico can't advance their claims that UBS Financial Services illegally underwrote $3 billion in bonds, ruling that the island's financial restructuring plan transferred the right to those claims to a special committee.

  • May 22, 2024

    Wells Fargo Tries 2 Tactics To Get Overdraft Fee Suit Bounced

    Wells Fargo is arguing to a South Dakota federal judge that customers suing as a potential class fully knew they were subject to penalties when they bounced checks, and that an arbitration clause obligates them to handle disputes outside court.

  • May 22, 2024

    Accepting Price-Fix Tech Invite Can Be Enough: DOJ Official

    An advisor to the Justice Department's top competition official continued to argue Wednesday that signing onto a price setting algorithm can be enough to trigger antitrust liability if the program was billed as fixing prices.

  • May 22, 2024

    FCC Weighs Requiring AI Disclosures In Political Ads

    The Federal Communications Commission will soon decide if it needs new rules requiring disclosure of content generated with artificial intelligence in radio and TV political ads.

  • May 22, 2024

    Evidence Shaky In First Zantac Cancer Trial, Drugmakers Say

    Attorneys for GlaxoSmithKline and Boehringer Ingelheim told a Chicago jury Wednesday that no one besides a plaintiff's paid witnesses have said publicly that Zantac heartburn medication causes colon cancer, calling on the jurors to reject claims that the companies owe $640 million for a woman's cancer diagnosis.

  • May 22, 2024

    Daughter Sues Over Oil Co. Family's 'Looting Campaign'

    Two relatives of Westmore Fuel Co. Inc.'s late co-founder are plundering the company to edge out his successors, the daughter of a co-founder claims in a Connecticut state court complaint aiming to dissolve the firm.

  • May 22, 2024

    DuPont 'Document Dump' Rattles NC In PFAS Suit

    North Carolina and DuPont on Wednesday battled over what the state called a roughly 5 million-page "document dump" ahead of a looming June 3 discovery deadline in its contamination lawsuit, irking a business court judge in the process.

  • May 22, 2024

    Uvalde Families Ink $2M Deal With City Over School Shooting

    The families of 19 victims of the deadly May 2022 shooting at Robb Elementary School announced Wednesday that they've reached a presuit settlement with the city of Uvalde, Texas, that includes $2 million in payments to the families and commitments to better train police officers in their shooting responses.

  • May 22, 2024

    WeChat Users Must Arbitrate Privacy Row, Calif. Panel Says

    California appellate justices said Monday that WeChat users must arbitrate their proposed class action accusing Tencent of using politically motivated practices to censor their communications, saying plaintiffs can't argue they never agreed to terms of service with the arbitration provision while also basing their complaint on those same terms of service.

  • May 22, 2024

    Major County Sheriffs Seek FCC's OK For Axon Cameras

    Sheriffs from the largest U.S. counties called on the Federal Communications Commission to waive technical rules to allow law enforcement to use three new Axon camera devices.

  • May 22, 2024

    SC Gov. Signs Earned Wage Access Bill Into Law

    South Carolina has become the fifth state to approve a new law governing so-called earned wage access products, which provide workers with cash advances, as the Palmetto State joins Nevada, Missouri, Wisconsin and Kansas in regulating the products.

  • May 22, 2024

    Rakoff Punts Terraform Args Amid Big-Dollar Settlement Talk

    A hearing on whether Terraform Labs and its creator Do Kwon must pay billions of dollars in penalties after being found liable for fraud by a Manhattan jury was delayed Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff, who said the sides are actively pursuing a settlement.

  • May 22, 2024

    Lead Blood Test Maker To Plead Guilty, Pay $42M Over Defects

    Medical device maker Magellan Diagnostics has agreed to pay at least $42 million and plead guilty to hiding a defect in its blood testing devices for lead that caused inaccurately low results for tens of thousands of children and others, Massachusetts federal prosecutors said.

  • May 22, 2024

    Mich. Judge Gives Final OK To Engineering Co. $8M Flint Deal

    A Michigan federal judge has granted final approval of an $8 million settlement between a civil engineering company and Flint, Michigan, residents, putting to rest claims the company failed to warn them of likely lead contamination that triggered a drinking water crisis in the city.

  • May 22, 2024

    CFPB Says Some Credit Card Standards Apply To BNPL Firms

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said Wednesday that shoppers using buy-now, pay-later products are covered by some of the same federal safeguards as those that apply to traditional credit cards, issuing the agency's first-ever guidance directed at this fintech-heavy field of financing.

  • May 21, 2024

    Hawaii Wins $916M From Bristol-Myers, Sanofi Over Plavix

    Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Sanofi owe more than $916 million to the state of Hawaii for not warning patients of East Asian or Pacific Island ancestry of potential health risks associated with their blood thinner Plavix, a state judge ruled Tuesday, following a trip to the state's highest court.

  • May 21, 2024

    Minn. Poised To Join State Data Privacy Law Patchwork

    Minnesota is on the brink of becoming the latest state to enact comprehensive data privacy legislation, after the legislature sent to the governor's desk a measure that would give consumers more control over how companies use their personal information, including for profiling purposes, and require businesses to appoint a lead privacy official. 

  • May 21, 2024

    Pacific Seafood Beats Crab Price-Fixing Claims, For Now

    A California federal magistrate judge on Tuesday dismissed a proposed class action claiming Pacific Seafood fixed the price paid to fishers for Dungeness crab in the Pacific Northwest but will allow the fisherman who filed the suit the opportunity to amend most of his claims.

Expert Analysis

  • When The Platform Is A Product, Strict Liability Can Attach

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    A New York state court's recent ruling in Patterson v. Meta, holding that social media platforms can be considered products, appears to be the first of its kind — but if it is upheld and adopted by other courts, the liability implications for internet companies could be incredibly far-reaching, say attorneys at Patterson Belknap.

  • 4 Sectors Will Likely Bear Initial Brunt Of FTC 'Junk Fees' Rule

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    If the Federal Trade Commission adopts its comprehensive proposed rule to ban unfair or deceptive fees across the U.S. economy, many businesses — including those in the lodging, event ticketing, dining and transportation sectors — will need to reexamine the way they market and price their products and services, say attorneys at Skadden.

  • What Lies Behind Diverging US And UK Insolvency Trends

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    Contrasting U.K. and U.S. insolvency trends highlight the importance of policy interventions in shaping consumer financial outcomes and economic recovery, and while the U.K.'s approach seems to have mitigated issues, the U.S. faces challenges exacerbated by economic conditions and policy transitions, says Thomas Curran at Thomas H. Curran Associates.

  • 8 Legal Issues Influencing Investors In The Creator Economy

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    The rapidly expanding digital creator economy — funding for which more than doubled in the U.S. in the first quarter — comes with its own set of unique legal issues investors must carefully consider before diving in, say Louis Lehot and Alan Pate at Foley & Lardner.

  • Key Antitrust Class Certification Questions Remain Unclear

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    The U.S. Supreme Court, by recently rejecting certiorari in Visa v. National ATM, turned down the opportunity to clarify how to analyze disputed evidence bearing on the certification of antitrust class actions, leaving the applicable standards unclear instead of resolving this split of authority, says Jonathan Berman at Jones Day.

  • Action Steps To Address New Restrictions On Outbound Data

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    Companies should immediately assess all their data-based operations so they can consider strategies to effectively mitigate new compliance risks brought on by recently implemented transaction restrictions, including a Justice Department proposal and landmark data legislation, say attorneys at Wiley.

  • E-Discovery Quarterly: Recent Rulings On Text Message Data

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    Electronically stored information on cellphones, and in particular text messages, can present unique litigation challenges, and recent court decisions demonstrate that counsel must carefully balance what data should be preserved, collected, reviewed and produced, say attorneys at Sidley.

  • CFPB Reality Check: Video Game Cash Is Still Money

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    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's recent report examining payments within online video games indicates that financial services offered within the game marketplace are quickly evolving to the point where they are indistinguishable from traditional financial services subject to regulation, say attorneys at Sheppard Mullin.

  • What CRA Deadline Means For Biden Admin. Rulemaking

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    With the 2024 election rapidly approaching, the Biden administration must race to finalize proposed agency actions within the next few weeks, or be exposed to the chance that the following Congress will overturn the rules under the Congressional Review Act, say attorneys at Covington.

  • The Legal Issues Raised In Minn. Rate Exportation Opt-Out Bill

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    A recent Minnesota House bill would amend state law by opting out of the federal interest rate preemption and introduce several legal gray areas if passed, including issues regarding loan location, rates on credit card loans and values of state charters, says Karen Grandstrand at Fredrikson & Byron.

  • Keeping Up With Class Actions: A New Era Of Higher Stakes

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    Corporate defendants saw unprecedented settlement numbers across all areas of class action litigation in 2022 and 2023, and this year has kept pace so far, with three settlements that stand out for the nature of the claims and for their high dollar amounts, says Gerald Maatman at Duane Morris.

  • What's Notable In JAMS' New Mass Arbitration Rules

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    The Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services’ recently released guidelines, coming on the heels of similar American Arbitration Association amendments, suggests that mass arbitrations will remain an efficient means for consumers to vindicate their rights against companies, say Jonathan Waisnor and Brandon Heitmann at Labaton Keller. 

  • 5 Climate Change Regulatory Issues Insurers Should Follow

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    The climate change landscape for insurers has changed dramatically recently — and not just because of the controversy over the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's climate-related risk disclosure rules, says Thomas Dawson at McDermott.

  • How New Rule Would Change CFIUS Enforcement Powers

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    Before the May 15 comment deadline, companies may want to weigh in on proposed regulatory changes to enforcement and mitigation tools at the disposal of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, including broadened subpoena powers, difficult new mitigation timelines and higher maximum penalties, say attorneys at Venable.

  • Is The Digital Accessibility Storm Almost Over?

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    Though private businesses have faced a decadelong deluge of digital accessibility complaints in the absence of clear regulations or uniformity among the courts, attorneys at Epstein Becker address how recent federal courts’ pushback against serial Americans with Disabilities Act plaintiffs and the U.S. Department of Justice’s proposed government accessibility standards may presage a break in the downpour.

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