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Civil Code 1799.1 requires a creditor to provide any co-signer of a consumer credit contract with a specified warning about the risks of guaranteeing someone else's debt.  And Civil Code 1799.5 provides that the creditor may not enforce the contract and any accompanying security interest against the co-signer if the statutory warning isn't given.  This decision holds that these provisions… Read More

The TCPA (47 USC 227(b)(1)(A)) and the FCC's implementing regulation (47 CFR 64.1200(a)(1)) both prohibit any calls made by an autodialler (or with a pre-recorded message) to a cellphone regardless of the content of the call or message--unless it is an emergency call or one made with the recipient's express consent.  The FCC's regulation imposes additional restrictions on telemarketing calls… Read More

Even though home protection contracts are regulated under a separate part of the Insurance Code (Ins. Code 12740 et seq.) and are subject to the Unfair Insurance Practices Act (Ins. Code 790.03), this decision holds that home protection contracts are sufficiently different from insurance so that the homeowner cannot state a claim against the contract issuer for tortious breach of… Read More

The district court properly dismissed this false labeling suit against Target.  The label of its biotin food supplement stated "helps support healthy fair and skin."  Under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. § 343(r)(6)(B)), FDA regulation of food supplement labels preempts state law.  Here, the label met the FDA's three requirements for such a label.  Target had… Read More

The Song-Beverly Warranty Act requires new car manufacturers to provide restitution of the purchase price to the buyer of a defective car.  (Civ. Code 1793.2(d)(2)(B).)  This decision holds that if the buyer sells the defective car or trades it in on another car from a third party car dealer, the amount that the manufacturer must pay the buyer is reduced… Read More

The trial court did not abuse its discretion in declining to apportion plaintiff's attorney fees between the Song-Beverly Act claim (on which fees were awardable by statute) and the fraudulent concealment claim (a non-fee-bearing claim) since the two claims were based on a common set of facts.  In selecting a 2.0 multiplier on fees, the trial court did not improperly… Read More

This decision reverses a judgment for fraudulent concealment of an alleged defect in a car because there was no substantial evidence that before the plaintiff bought the car (thus allegedly relying on the concealment) the defendant knew of the alleged defect and that it was unable or unwilling to fix it.  However, the decision also affirms the judgment for plaintiff… Read More

Ocwen, a mortgage loan servicer, periodically reviewed credit reports of borrowers who had received bankruptcy discharges of personal liabiity on debts secured deeds of trust on their homes.  This decision holds that Ocwen did not violate the Fair Credit Reporting Act by doing so.  Ocwen had a permissible pupose in trying to determine whether the borrowers qualified for an alternative… Read More

The FELA (45 U.S.C. § 55) invalidates any contractual provision “the purpose or intent of which shall be to enable any common carrier to exempt itself from any liability created by this act [FELA]."  However, a release provided in settlement of a specific liability claim is enforceable. (See Callen v. Pennsylvania R. Co. (1948) 332 U.S. 625, 631.)  Federal courts… Read More

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