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Preview: LexisNexis® Mealey's™ California Section 17200 Legal News

LexisNexis® Mealey's™ California Section 17200 Legal News



Headline California Section 17200 Legal News from LexisNexis®



 



9th Circuit Certifies Question On Interest Rates To California High Court
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 21 certified a question to the California Supreme Court on whether high interest rates on consumer loans violated California finance law (Eduardo De La Torre, et al. v. CashCall Inc., Nos. 14-17571, 15-15042, 9th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 6997).



9th Circuit Reverses Dismissal Of Insured's UCL Claims Against AARP
PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 2 reversed a district court's dismissal of an insured's claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), finding that he plausibly stated a claim that an insurer was soliciting insurance in California without having the proper license and in violation of the California Insurance Code (Jerald Friedman v. AARP Inc., et al., No. 14-56765, 9th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 7845).



Insured Waived Appeal Of Dismissal Of Unfair Competition Claim, 9th Circuit Says
PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 25 affirmed a lower federal court's ruling in favor of a homeowners insurer in its insured's lawsuit alleging violations under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and California's unfair competition law (UCL) (Kamlesh Banga v. Allstate Insurance Co., No. 14-17147, 9th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 7284).



ACA Medical Loss Ratio Includes Insurer's Settlement Payments, Judge Says
LOS ANGELES - More than $34 million an insurer paid as a result of improperly categorizing out-of-network providers counts as incurred claims for purposes of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)'s medical loss ratio (MLR), a federal judge in California held May 1 in denying remand and dismissing a California unfair competition law action (Rebecca Morris, et al. v. Blue Shield of California, et al., No. 16-5914, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66043).



Judge Finds Hoverboard Seller Infringed On Trademarks, Awards $1M
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on April 20 granted a motion filed by the owner of certain trademarks for summary judgment on its other claims for infringement and counterfeiting of a registered mark, awarding it $1 million in damages (UL LLC v. The Space Chariot Inc., et al., No. 2:16-cv-08172, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 56147).



Company Sues Competitor, Former Employees Over Trade Secrets Misappropriation
VENTURA, Calif. - A pharmaceutical company and its subsidiary sued a "pure-play biosimilar platform company" and several former employees in California state court on April 21, alleging that the defendants engaged in unfair competition and misappropriated the company's trade secrets in violation of California and common law (Amgen Inc., et al. v. Coherus Biosciences Inc., et al., No. 56-2017-00493553-CU-BT-VTA, Calif. Super, Ventura Co.).



9th Circuit Affirms Dismissal In Dispute Over Growth Hormone Ads
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge properly rejected a state law unfair competition plaintiff's effort to apply the Lanham Act's "establishment claim" standard outside the context of a Lanham Act claim, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled April 21 (Serena Kwan, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated v. SanMedica International, No. 15-15496, 9th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 6995).



Judge Dismisses Contract Claims Against Financial Adviser, Allows Amendment
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on April 18 granted a motion filed by an investment advising company to dismiss claims for fraud and violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) asserted by a technical services company and a wealth management company in relation to an underlying service agreement, finding that the claims lacked the required facts to support the allegations (SVGRP LLC, et al. v. Sowell Financial Services, LLC, et al., No.5:16-cv-07302, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59271).



Judge Finds No Support For Declaratory Relief Claim Against Solar Energy Firm
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on May 4 granted a partial motion to dismiss claims in an action filed by a solar energy company that alleges that a former employee violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) and breached a confidentiality agreement when she began working for a competitor (SolarCity Corporation v. Sunpower Corporation, et al., No. 16-CV-05509, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 68639).



Judge Dismisses Infringement Claim Against Party City Over Drink Vessel Patent
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on April 25 dismissed claims asserted by a drink vessel maker for patent infringement and unjust enrichment in relation to a party supply retailer's alleged infringement on its utility patent but found that part of its claim for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) can proceed (Small Axe Enterprises Inc. v. Amscan Inc., et al., No. 3:16-cv-00981, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62900).



Judge Finds Alcohol Monitoring Device Companies Did Not Misrepresent Products
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on April 28 granted a motion filed by the maker and distributor of alcohol monitoring devices to dismiss claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and fraud claims against them, finding that they failed to plead sufficient facts to support the causes of action (Hansen, et al. v. Scram of California Inc., et al., No. 2:17-cv-01474, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65341).



Trial Court Properly Rejected UCL Foreclosure Claims, Appeals Court Finds
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A couple lacks the authority to challenge the assignment of the rights to the mortgage on their property in an effort to preempt foreclosure, a California appeals court held May 9 in affirming judgment on unfair competition law (UCL) claims (William E. Hellmuth, et al. v. Bank of America N.A., et al., No. H042544, Calif. App., 6th Dist., 2017 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 3230).



Judge Finds Borrower Did Not Rescind Note, Dismisses TILA And UCL Claims
RIVERSIDE, Calif. - A California federal judge on May 15 granted a motion filed by a lender and a loan servicer to dismiss a property owner's complaint, which asserted claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and the Fair Debt Collection Practice Act (FDCPA), finding that his allegations were conclusory (Phillip D. Jackson v. Nationstar Mortgage LLC, et al., No. 5:17-cv-00044, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73826).



Judge Dismisses RESPA Claim Against Ocwen Without Leave To Amend
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on May 2 decided that claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) against a loan servicer failed because a borrower failed to show that it did not respond to her request for information (Shelisa Todd v. Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC, No. 17-cv-60454, S.D. Fla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66541).



Magistrate Finds Borrower Lacks Standing Under California High Court Ruling
FRESNO, Calif. - After finding that a borrower lacked standing under a recently decided California Supreme Court ruling to challenge a foreclosure and that his claims were not cognizably pleaded, a California federal magistrate judge on May 8 recommended that a motion to amend the borrower's complaint to add new defendants should be denied as futile (David Leroy Newman v. Bank of New York Mellon, et al., No. 1:12-cv-01629, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 70076).



Judge Dismisses Foreclosure- Related Claims Against CitiMortgage, Allows Amendment
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on May 17 partially granted a mortgage company's motion to dismiss claims including violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), allowing part of a borrower's dual tracking claim to proceed and dismissing the remainder of the claims with leave to amend (Gilbert Chavez v. CitiMortgage Inc., No. 17-cv-01205, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75430).



Judge Finds Borrower Did Not Allege New Facts To Support Amendment
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on May 18 denied a borrower's motion to amend her complaint in which she alleges that a bank violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other laws related to a wrongful foreclosure, finding that she failed to allege any facts that would support new claims (Brenda D. Dowling v. Bank of America, et al., No. 1:14-cv-01041, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 76063).



Judge Remands Wrongful Termination Suit For Untimely Removal
LOS ANGELES - After finding that an advertising firm's removal of a former employee's case asserting claims for wrongful termination and violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) was not proper, a California federal judge on April 26 remanded the case to a state court (Annabel Hernandez v. YP Advertising and Publishing LLC, No. 16-9612, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 63485).



Unfair Competition Claims OK'd, But Judge Says No Relief Due In Surgical Gown Case
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on May 15 said a class representative proved that two defendants violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) by selling defective surgical gowns, but denied the plaintiff's request for restitution and injunctive relief given a jury's $454 million compensatory and punitive damages verdict (Bahamas Surgery Center v. Kimberly-Clarke Corp., et al., No. 14-8390, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73778).



Judge Severs Military Law Claims From Officer's Federal Complaint
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on April 24 severed a petition filed under California military law from a complaint in which an officer in the California Army National Guard (CAARNG) asserted claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims in relation to the servicing of his student loans, finding that the military law petition should be severed from the federal case (Christian Wellisch v. Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, et al., No. 17-cv-00213, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62095).



California High Court Finds Arbitration Provision Is Contrary To Public Policy
LOS ANGELES - The California Supreme Court on April 6 reversed a court's ruling that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) does not preempt a rule that provides that arbitration agreements for public injunctive relief under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law are not enforceable in California, remanding a credit card user's allegations related to marketing of the card against the lender for further review (Sharon McGill v. Citibank, N.A., No. S224086, Calif. Sup., 2017 Cal. LEXIS 2551).



Judge Stays UCL And Other Claims Pending Review By Arbitrator
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 28 compelled claims for violation of breach of contract, violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other causes of action to arbitration under a cable services agreement, finding that questions underlying the dispute must be decided by an arbitrator (Michael Song v. Charter Communications Inc., et al., No. 17cv325, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45972.)



Judge Finds Company In Contempt For Unlawfully Selling Domain Names
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on April 10 granted a motion filed by a company that alleges that another entity violated California's unfair completion (UCL) and false advertising laws when it sold trademarked domain names, finding the company in contempt of a temporary restraining order and injunction (UL LLC v. The Space Chariot Inc., et al., No. 2:16-cv-08172, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 56147).



Judge Refuses To Grant Request For Interlocutory Appeal Of Ruling For CrossFit
SAN DIEGO - After determining that the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) failed to show that a lawsuit in which the owner of a workout program asserted violations of the Lanham Act and California's unfair competition law (UCL) in relation to data published by NSCA did not constitute the type of "exceptional" case that would warrant certifying an interlocutory appeal, a California federal judge on April 3 rejected the association's request to appeal a summary judgment ruling (Crossfit Inc. v. National Strength and Conditioning Association, No. 14cv1191, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 50719).



Court Finds Release On Employment Termination Was Not Defamatory
LOS ANGELES - After finding that a former president and founder of a clothing company failed to show that he would likely succeed on the merits of his claims at trial, a California court on March 28 affirmed judgment in favor of an investment firm on his claims for defamation and violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) (Dov Charney v. Standard General, L.P., et al., No. B268928, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 5, 2017 Cal. App. LEXIS 274).



Court Affirms Verdict For Unpaid Overtime For Newspaper Employees
LOS ANGELES - After finding that all of a newspaper's challenges to a jury verdict in favor of former employees, who asserted claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other causes of action related to the termination of their jobs, failed, a California court on March 23 affirmed an award of damages in their favor for unpaid wages and overtime (Sun K. Byun, et al. v. Joong-Ang Daily News California, Inc., No. B270539, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 8, 2017 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2015).



Judge Finds Lack Of Standing To Assert UCL Claim Against Popcorn Maker
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 27 dismissed a consumer's amended complaint in which she asserted violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims related to partially hydrogenated vegetable oils in popcorn that she purchased, finding that the pleading contained the same defects as the original complaint (Jacquelyn McGee v. Diamond Foods Inc., No. 14cv2446, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 44723).



Campbell Soup Trans Fat Labeling Class Suit Dismissed; Motions For Sanctions Denied
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 21 granted a motion to dismiss a class complaint accusing Campbell Soup Co. of deceiving customers by labeling soup as healthy even though it contained trans fat but denied motions by both parties seeking sanctions (Harold Brower, et al. v. Campbell Soup Company, No. 16-1005, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40792).



California Court Affirms Demurrer, Finds Borrowers Had No Interest In Property
SAN FRANCISCO - A California court on March 22 affirmed a trial court's decision to grant a demurrer filed by a mortgage company to a complaint filed by borrowers in relation to a foreclosure, finding that they did not allege sufficient facts to support their claim for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) (Lonnie Ratliff, Jr. v. EMC Mortgage LLC, et al., No. A144123, Calif. App., 1st. Dist., Div. 3, 2017 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2057).



California Court Affirms Ruling For Lenders, Finds Record Is Inadequate
LOS ANGELES - A California appellate court on April 5 rejected a borrower's appeal of a trial court's grant of summary judgment for a lender and a loan servicer on his claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and other claims, finding that he did not provide the court with an adequate record on appeal (Payman Emamian v. Nationstar Mortgage, et al., No. B271942, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 3, 2017 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2367).



Judge Finds Lenders And Trust Did Not Violate California Housing Law
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on April 10 dismissed a borrower's claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), negligence and other claims related to foreclosure proceedings, finding that she failed to show that she was not notified of a denial of a loan modification or that the lenders and loan servicers owed her a duty of care (Lisa McCarthy v. Servis One Inc., et al., No. 17-cv-00900, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54649).



Federal Judge Finds No Facts Showing Loan Transfer Was Void
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on April 5 dismissed numerous claims asserted by a property owner, including causes of action for violations of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), finding that he failed to plead the claims with the required specificity (Fernando D. Lopez v. Wells Fargo, N.A., et al., No. 16-cv-0811, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 52527).



Federal Judge Grants Eddie Bauer Employee's Request For Class Discovery
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on April 11 granted a request by a former retail employee who asserts violations of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and labor code for the contact information of all employees of Eddie Bauer LLC that fall within the scope of her proposed class action, finding that the information was necessary to the class (Stephanie Heredia v. Eddie Bauer, LLC, No. 16-cv-06236, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54709).



Wells Fargo Agrees To Pay $110M To Settle Unauthorized Accounts Class Claims
SAN FRANCISCO - Wells Fargo & Co. and Wells Fargo Bank N.A. have agreed to pay $110 million to end claims by a class of individuals who allege that the banking company opened accounts, enrolled them in products and services and submitted applications for products and services without consent, according to a joint notice of settlement filed March 28 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (Shahriar Jabbari, et al. v. Wells Fargo & Company, et al., No. 15-2159, N.D. Calif.).



California Federal Judge Denies Decertification, Finds Vendors Are Employees
SAN FRANCISCO - A network of "vendors" who perform maintenance and repair services at properties owned by Field Asset Services Inc. (FAS) are employees, not independent contractors, and are owed overtime and business expenses, a California federal judge ruled March 17 in an order granting the vendors' motion for partial summary judgment and denying FAS's motion to decertify the class of vendors (Fred Bowerman, et al. v. Field Asset Services Inc., et al., No. 13-57, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39000).



Class Certification Granted In Gingko Biloba Supplement False Labeling Lawsuit
SAN DIEGO - Common questions predominate in a lawsuit alleging that product claims on the labeling for nutritional supplements are false, a California federal judge ruled March 16, granting a motion for class certification (Tatiana Korolshteyn, et al. v. Costco Wholesale Corporation, et al., No. 15-709, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38192).



California Federal Judge: Supplement Labeling Class Suit Belongs In State Court
SAN DIEGO - A class lawsuit over nutritional supplement labeling belongs in state court because the combined amount in controversy is less than $5 million, even when a 25 percent attorney fee award is included, a California federal judge ruled March 24, rejecting arguments by both sides that the case should remain in federal court (Paige Petkevicius, et al. v. NBTY, Inc., et al., No. 14-2616, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 43636).



Judge Grants Motion To Strike Punitive Damages Claim Related To Car Issues
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on April 7 granted a motion filed by Ford Motor Co. to strike a consumer's punitive damages claim, finding that her claims under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims do not allow for punitive damages (Beverly J. Marshall v. Ford Motor Company, et al., No. 1:17-CV-0006, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53935).



Judge Dismisses UCL Claims Related To Allegedly Unfair Rental Late Fees
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 31 granted a real estate company's motion to dismiss claims that it violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) when it charged a tenant a late fee, finding that the tenant failed to show that the fees were not practicable (Jordan Kohler v. Greystar Real Estate Partners, LLC, No. 15-cv-02195, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49762).



$454M Verdict Returned By Federal Jury In California Surgical Gown Fraud Trial
LOS ANGELES - A California federal jury on April 7 returned a $454 million verdict in a California class action trial alleging that defendants Kimberly-Clark Corp. and spinoff Halyard Health Inc. sold surgical gowns that did not meet standards for protecting operating room personnel from bodily fluids (Bahamas Surgery Center, LLC, et al. v. Kimberly Clarke Corporation, et al., No. 14-8390, C.D. Calif.).



Judge Allows Some Claims In Suit Alleging Stem Cell Treatments Are Scam
SAN DIEGO - Customers of a stem cell therapy business sufficiently plead that the business advertised false and misleading information on its website about consumer satisfaction rates in a way that was deceptive to potential customers, though they must amend their class claims that the business misrepresented the efficacy of its treatments if those claims are to proceed, a California federal judge held April 6 (Selena Moorer, et al. v. StemGenex Medical Group, Inc., et al., No. 3:16-cv-02816, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53294).



9th Circuit Finds Chase Falsely Promised Loan Modification To Borrower
LOS ANGELES - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 13 affirmed a district court's finding that a property owner asserted a viable claim for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) but reversed its rulings in favor of a bank on the property owner's claims for breach of contract and violation of the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) (Mahin Oskoui v. J.P. Morgan Chase Bank, et al., No. 15-55457, 9th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 4365).



9th Circuit Finds Borrower Lacks Standing To Assert UCL Violation
PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 6 affirmed dismissal of a homeowner's claims for violation of California's unfair competition law and other California law, finding that there was no private right of action available to him under the law or that loan servicers acted unlawfully (Peter Zeppeiro v. Green Tree Servicing LLC, et al., No. 15-55747, 9th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 3951).



Court Finds Borrowers Have No Standing To Challenge Foreclosure
SAN FRANCISCO - A California appellate panel on Feb. 17 affirmed a ruling in favor of various lenders, finding that property owners failed to show that they had standing to challenge a foreclosure under a pooling and services agreement (Hanneke C. Gary R. Lohse, v. Nationstar Mortgage LLC, et al., No. A142814, Calif. App., 1st App., Div. 4, 2017 Cal. App. Unpub LEXIS 1210).



Judge Finds Claims Related To Patents Must Be Reviewed Under Korean Law
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on Feb. 24 partially granted a motion filed by a former employee of a company that makes high-voltage power conversion systems to dismiss certain claims related to his alleged theft of proprietary information to obtain patents, finding that some of the claims should be adjudicated under Korean law (Power Integrations Inc. v. Chan-Woong Park, No. 16-cv-02367, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26467).



Judge Finds Employees Failed To Prove Theory Of Joint Liability
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 8 found that former employees, who sold skincare products for various entities, failed to show that a company was the alter ego of other defendants named in the case, granting the owner of the product's motion to dismiss claims for violation of California labor code and California's unfair competition law (UCL) (Candle Horton, et al. v. NeoStrata Company Inc., et al., No. 3:16-CV-02189, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34059).



Judge Finds Claims Against Former Employee Are Preempted By CUTSA
SAN FRANCISCO - After finding that a company's claims related to a former employee's alleged theft of proprietary information for violation of California Penal Code Section 502 and for conversion were based on the same facts as its claims for misappropriation of trade secrets, a California federal judge on March 1 found that the claims were preempted by the California Uniform Trade Secrets Act (CUTSA) (Henry Schein Inc. v. Jennifer Cook, et al., No. 16-cv-03166, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 29183).



Court Dismisses Employment Claims Related To Shared Tip-Pooling Policy
SAN DIEGO - After finding that a restaurant chain's shared tip-pooling policy is not unlawful, a California federal judge on Feb. 28 dismissed a former server's claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and for penalties under the California's Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) (Brendan Wilkes v. Benihana Inc., et al., No. 16cv2219, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 29127).



Judge Refuses To Strike Punitive Damages Claim Related To Ladder Collapse
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 21 refused to strike a claim for punitive damages asserted by the purchaser of an extension ladder who alleges that he fell and suffered serious injuries after it collapsed (William Evans v. Home Depot U.S.A. Inc., et al., No. 16-cv-07191, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24171).



4th Circuit Finds Gambling In Virtual Casino Was Not A Monetary Loss
RICHMOND, Va. - The Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 17 affirmed dismissal of a complaint filed by a player of a video game, finding that her claims for recovery of money spent in a virtual casino did not constitute money lost under Maryland's loss-recovery statute (Mia Mason v. Machine Zone Inc., No. 15-2469, 4th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 4766).



Judge Partially Dismisses Claims On Retailer's Advertisements On Thread Count
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 28 refused to grant a retailer's motion to dismiss claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and for false advertising, but granted dismissal with leave to amend in relation to claims for products that he did not purchase (William Rushing v. Williams-Sonoma Inc., et al., No. 16-cv-01421, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28227).



Judge Orders BMW To Show Cause As To Why UCL Case Should Not Be Transferred
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on Feb. 21 ordered a car manufacturer to show cause as to why its claims for violation of California's unfair competition law and trademark infringement should not be transferred to another venue (BMW of North America, LLC, et al. v. Michael Chambers, et al., No. 17-0846, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24096).



Judge Remands Class Action Filed Against Ford To California Court
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on March 10 remanded a class action lawsuit filed by product specialists who assert wage-related claims against a car maker and staffing companies, finding that the amount in controversy did not meet federal jurisdictional requirements (Henry Chen, et al. v. United Talent Agency LLC, et al., No. 17-1848, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34960).



Judge Refuses To Substitute Plaintiff In Insurance Coverage Dispute
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on March 16 denied an insured's petition to substitute her as the plaintiff in an action in which her husband sought coverage for theft under an insurance policy, finding that she failed to submit sufficient medical evidence to support a finding that he was incompetent to proceed as a plaintiff (Ray Gibson v. Hagerty Insurance Agency, et al., No. 1:16-cv-00677, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38231).



Federal Judge Denies Class Certification For Class Of Truck Drivers
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on March 3 denied a former truck driver's request to certify a class of truck drivers in relation to an alleged failure to pay a minimum wage for the hours worked, finding that he failed to meet the federal pleading requirements (Robert Gatdula, et al. v. CRST International Inc., et al., No. 11-1285, C.D. Calif., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 184720).



Craft Brew Alliance Accused Of Making Kona Beer On The Mainland
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Craft Brew Alliance Inc. has deceived and overcharged consumers by falsely advertising its Kona Brewing Co. brand as a local beer made in Hawaii, but it's actually made in the continental United States, two California women allege in a class complaint filed Feb. 28 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (Sara Cilloni, et al. v. Craft Brew Alliance, Inc., et al., No. 17-1027, N.D. Calif.).



Amendment Permitted, Class Certification Considered In Honda Window Defect Suit
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on March 10 denied a motion for summary judgment filed by American Honda Motor Co. Inc. in a proposed class complaint accusing the car maker of selling certain models with defective windows and granted the plaintiffs' motion to amend their complaint to substitute the named plaintiff to represent a narrowed proposed class (Phyllis Grodzitsky, et al. v. American Honda Motor Co., Inc., No. 12-1142, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 185019).



Uber Sued For Trade Secret, Patent Violations In California Federal Court
SAN FRANCISCO - Waymo LLC - a Google Inc. division devoted to the development of self-driving cars - accused Uber Technologies Inc. of "calculated theft" in a patent infringement and trade secret misappropriation complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Feb. 23 (Waymo LLC v. Uber Technologies Inc., et al., No. 17-939, N.D. Calif.).



Judge Preliminarily OKs $22.5 Million Settlement Of Google AdWords Class Action
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Preliminary approval of a $22.5 million settlement of a class action over Google Inc.'s AdWords program under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law (FAL) was granted March 9, with a California federal judge approving a proposed settlement class and settlement fund and setting dates for class notification and a fairness hearing (In Re Google AdWords Litigation, No. 5:08-cv-03369, N.D. Calif.).



Judge: MDL Court Can Rule On Jurisdictional Issues In Volkswagen Emissions Suit
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A federal judge in California on March 7 stayed a consumer's lawsuit over the installation of defeat devices in some of Volkswagen Group of America Inc.'s diesel vehicles pending transfer to a multidistrict litigation court, finding that the MDL court can determine if jurisdictional issues warrant remanding the action to state court (Pamela Woodcox, et al. v. Volkswagen Group of America, Inc., d/b/a Volkswagen of America, Inc., et al., No. 17-215 WBS DB, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 32609).