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A UCL suit by a public prosecutor does not operate as merger and bar of private suits for the same alleged UCL violations against the same defendant.  A law enforcement action by prosecutors is designed to protect the public, not one to benefit the individuals harmed by the defendant's illegal practices, even if restitution is sought and ordered in the… Read More

B&P Code 6128(a) makes it a misdemeanor for an attorney to engage in deceit or collusion with intent to deceive the court or a party.  In this case, the LA and San Francisco district attorneys sued the Potter law firm claiming it engaged in an unlawful business practice in violation of B&P Code 6128(a) and 17200 by filing shakedown ADA… Read More

Plaintiff alleged a viable claim under 17200's fraudulent and unfair business practice prongs against defendant concrete company which added to its regular rates for its concrete an "energy fee" and an "environmental fee" which plaintiff alleged were unconnected with anything having to do with energy or the environment and instead were just ways to increase defendant's profits.  Mislabeling the fees… Read More

Plaintiffs obtained a loan from defendant while it was an illegally unlicensed lender in California.  This decision holds that plaintiffs lack standing to sue defendant for violating the UCL in making the loan while unlicensed since plaintiffs suffered no loss of money or property due to the defendant's unlicensed status.  They received the exact loan terms for which they had… Read More

Following Department of Fair Employment & Housing v. Cisco Systems, Inc. (2022) 82 Cal.App.5th 93 and EEOC v. Waffle House Inc. (2002) 122 S.Ct. 754, this decision holds that the People of the State of California (as represented by the Attorney General and two District Attorneys) and the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement cannot be required to arbitrate claims that… Read More

Disagreeing with Torres v. Adventist Health System/West (2022) 77 Cal.App.5th 500 and Naranjo v. Doctors Medical Center of Modesto, Inc. (2023) 90 Cal.App.5th 1193, this decision holds that a plaintiff cannot state an actionable UCL or CLRA claim based on emergency room management fees charged by hospitals if the hospital complies with state law in posting its fee schedule on… Read More

The UCL’s standing requirements are satisfied when an organization, in furtherance of a bona fide, preexisting mission, incurs costs to respond to perceived unfair competition that threatens that mission, so long as those expenditures are independent of costs incurred in UCL litigation or preparations for such litigation.  When an organization has incurred such expenditures, it has “suffered injury in fact”… Read More

The collateral source rule cannot be used to confer UCL standing on a plaintiff who has suffered no economic injury from the alleged unfair competition but whose insurer paid more as a result.  Here, plaintiff alleged that Genentech sole a drug in too big doses that ended up wasting the expensive drug.  Plaintiff conceded he would have paid the same… Read More

Fire insurance policies must be written on the statutory form that includes a one-year from inception of loss (semi-contractual) statute of limitations.  This decision holds that the insured cannot circumvent that limitations provision by bringing suit under the UCL for an injunction against denial of insurance coverage under similar circumstances.  To have standing to sue under the UCL, the plaintiff… Read More

A plaintiff may state a viable CLRA claim based on the defendant's nondisclosure in any of the four circumstances that Limandri allows a fraud claim based on nondisclosure.  Here, plaintiff states a viable CLRA claim based on the defendant hospital's failure to disclose to emergency room patients that it would charge an evaluation and management services fee that could amount… Read More

The district court did not err in holding that Apple violated the UCL's "unfair" prong by prohibiting app developers from advertising to consumer iPhone users that they could pay through other means than Apple's in-app payment system and thereby save money.  Epic's mere failure to prove its antitrust claim doesn't bar it from establishing the practice is unfair under Cal-Tech's… Read More

Part of the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014, Lab. Code 248.5(e) provides that  “any person or entity enforcing this article on behalf of the public as provided for under applicable state law shall, upon prevailing, be entitled only to equitable, injunctive, or restitutionary relief ."  This decision holds that "enforcing this article on behalf of the public" refers… Read More

Plaintiff stated viable UCL and CLRA claims against Walmart based on its deceptive advertising of its "white baking chips." A reasonable consumer was likely to think, wrongly, that the product contained chocolate because the product was formed into chips that looked like chocolate chips, they were called "white" which could be understood as short for white chocolate, and were placed… Read More

Plaintiff stated viable UCL and CLRA claims against Target based on its deceptive advertising of its "white baking chips."  The product's price tag said "WHT CHOCO" while the product's label didn't clearly say whether the white baking chips contained or did not contain chocolate.  A reasonable consumer could read the price tag and believe that the chocolate chip-like white baking… Read More

Patients sued medical group after the group suffered a data breach that allowed hackers access to personal indentifying information concerning patients, including SSNs and medical histories.  This decision holds that the patients have UCL standing to sue.  Under their "benefit of the bargain" theory, the patients suffered a loss of money by purchasing the medical group's services which (a) weren't… Read More

The trial court correctly denied defendants' Anti-SLAPP motion to strike plaintiff's claims under the UCL and CLRA based on defendants' allegedly false statements in releases or other statements and advertisements that Michael Jackson was the lead artist on all tracks in a posthumous CD.  Even if the defendants' statements were protected speech under CCP 425.16(e), plaintiff showed a probability of… Read More

The San Diego city attorney sued the owner of Instacart for misclassifying its gig workers as independent contractors seeking an injunction and civil penalties under B&P Code 17200.  This decision holds that defendant cannot compel arbitration of the city attorney's claim.  Like the EEOC in EEOC v. Waffle House Inc. (2002) 122 S.Ct. 754, the city attorney here was not… Read More

Doctors sued county for the unreimbursed portion of their invoices for emergency medical treatment given to participants in the county's health plan.  Under the Knox-Keene Act, a health plan must reimburse noncontracting health care providers for the reasonable value of the emergency care they render to health plan participants.  A provider that thinks it has been underpaid may sue a… Read More

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