Consumer Protection

Nest and Revolv Hub Mandated Obsolescence and Product “Bricking”

Nest Revolv Lab

Lieff Cabraser is investigating consumer complaints about software-controlled obsolescence in certain of Nest Labs’ home automation control devices. Due in part to ownership changes at the manufacturer side of things, the Nest Labs Revolv Hub devices, which retail for around $300, are slated for permanent disabling via an unavoidable software update in May 2016.

The Revolv Hub is designed to communicate with and control other home electronic devices using several different communication standards. The Revolv Hub debuted in 2013 but was discontinued after Nest acquired Revolv in late 2014. One selling point was that consumers’ one-time payments of $300 included a “Lifetime Subscription,” including device updates. As an example of those intended updates, the device originally shipped without all of its antennas being functional; customers expected that the antennas would be enabled via subsequent updates.

Whatever their expectations for the devices, purchasers certainly did not expect that less than 2 years after the last Hubs were sold, instead of getting more upgrades, the devices would be intentionally, permanently, and completely disabled.

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If you own a Revolv Hub device and are concerned about its imminent manufacturer-mandated total disabling, we would welcome a chance to talk to you. The information you provide will help focus our investigation.

The information you provide will assist us in learning of the full extent of Nest’s alleged actions against consumers and their Revolv Hub devices. There is no charge or obligation for our confidential review of your case.


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Fraudulent Tax Filings

Fraudulent tax filings

Issue: Fraudulent Tax Filings

Lieff Cabraser has heard from people across the country who have received the shocking news that criminals have filed fraudulent tax returns using their name and identity. Invariably, legitimate tax-paying citizens endure extraordinary inconvenience and stress, incur significant costs to fix this problem, and delays in tax refunds, all of which can persist for years. Lieff Cabraser is dedicated to investigating the potential claims of these victims of tax fraud.

Taxpayers can learn that they were victims of tax fraud in one or more ways. Some taxpayers try to file their tax returns, only to learn from the I.R.S. or their state taxing authority that a tax return had previously been filed for that year under their name or social security number. Others may try filing tax returns using a tax preparation service — like Turbotax or H&R Block — only to be told by the service that someone has already used that very same service to file a return using their identity. Some taxpayers may unexpectedly receive a bill from these tax preparation companies, even though they never used their services, and find out that it’s a bill for the fraudulent tax return. Indeed, most often, victims report learning that the fraudulent returns themselves had been electronically filed through tax preparation services, like Turbo tax or H&R Block.

Fraudulent tax filings cause victims to incur significant expenses and spend hours dealing with the IRS, state tax authorities, their accountants, and others. In many cases as a result of the fraudulent tax filings, victims become ineligible to e-file tax returns, but must instead manually file their returns, for years to come.

Multiple lawsuits were filed in 2015 against one tax preparation company, Intuit, Inc., regarding fraudulent tax returns filed with Turbotax. Those lawsuits allege, among other things, that Intuit maintained inadequate security protocols that enabled fraudsters to open false accounts and file fraudulent tax returns in other peoples’ names through Turbotax. These cases seek monetary relief for the victims, and to force Intuit to make necessary improvements to its security to prevent the fraud going forward. More information about these cases is available here.

As the 2016 tax filing season (for tax year 2015) has gotten underway, Lieff Cabraser continues to receive reports of fraudulent tax filings, including fraudulent filings occurring through electronic tax preparation services.

Contact us

If you have had a fraudulent tax return filed in your name, we are interested in hearing about your experience. Please use the form below or you may call us toll-free at 1 800 541-7358 and ask to talk to a Lieff Cabraser consumer protection attorney. We will review your claim without charge or any obligation on your part.


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Life Insurance Surrender & Hidden Fees Investigation

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Lieff Cabraser is investigating allegations of fraud and other deceptive practices in connection with the sale of universal life insurance policies by the following companies:

  • Accordia (previously called Aviva and briefly called Athene)
  • Aegon USA
  • Allianz
  • Allstate Life
  • Midland National Life
  • Minnesota Life
  • NACOLAH Life
  • National Life Group (which includes LSW)
  • Nationwide
  • Old Mutual Financial
  • Pacific Life
  • Penn Mutual
  • Transamerica
  • Voya

Customers report that they have suffered unexpectedly low returns, and in some cases have lost their entire investments and been forced to surrender their policies, as a result of this alleged deceptive conduct.

We are investigating reports that these companies provide customers with promotional and other materials that are misleading about policy returns and hide significant risks associated with these products. For example, illustrations and graphs provided to customers about future returns fail to disclose or adequately disclose that actual returns are subject to market volatility and that market fluctuations can cause customers to receive significantly reduced returns and even to their lose their entire investments and be forced to surrender their policies. Customers also report being subject to additional deceptive practices by these companies, including being charged undisclosed fees that significantly reduce their returns.

Contact a Consumer Protection Lawyer at Lieff Cabraser

Lieff Cabraser is a national law firm that represents consumers throughout the United States in fraud and deceptive practices lawsuits, including cases involving deceptive practices by insurance companies.

If you have purchased an universal life insurance policy and were unexpectedly required to surrender your policy, have lost your investment, or have experienced lower than expected returns that you believe may be the result of undisclosed risks or fees or other deceptive practices, we invite you to complete our contact form below.

The information you provide will assist us in learning the full extent of the alleged practices, obtaining relief for affected customers, and stopping improper conduct by the companies going forward. We will review your complaint for free and without any obligation on your part.


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Starbucks Background Check Investigation

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Lieff Cabraser is investigating complaints by Starbucks job applicants that the company violates the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) by conducting background checks without notifying potential employees of these searches, and without obtaining their legally-required consent. Complaints note Starbucks’ failure to provide applicants with a description of their rights under the FCRA.

If you applied for a job at Starbucks within the last five years and were turned down, that decision may have been made based on a consumer background or credit check performed by Starbucks in violation of your legal rights. Indeed, because Starbucks does not properly notify applicants that it conducts background checks, applicants who were denied jobs at Starbucks may not know if an illegal search caused them to lose the job. (One reason that the law requires that individuals know about background checks is to get an opportunity to correct potential misinformation that can appear in such reports.)

Contact a Consumer Protection Attorney at Lieff Cabraser

If you were denied a job at Starbucks within the last five years, we would welcome the opportunity to talk with you about your experience and determine if this kind of illegal background check was a factor in Starbucks’ decision not to hire you. The information you provide will help us in learning the full extent of the alleged conduct and in potentially obtaining damages for victims of the behavior. We will review your case for free and without any obligation on your part.


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Annuity Fraud

Finance and Annuities

Lieff Cabraser is a national law firm that represents consumers throughout the United States in fraud and misrepresentation lawsuits, including cases where consumers are subjected to unfair or deceptive practices relating to annuity products.

We are currently investigating reports of undisclosed sales commissions being charged in annuity financial products, as well as allegations of other unfair and deceptive practices by certain insurance companies, including EquiTrust Life, American Equity, Midland National Life, and North American Company for Life and Health, all marketers of annuity products. Customers may not be aware that they have been subjected to commissions and other fees insufficiently, incompletely, or deceptively disclosed in annuity sales and marketing materials. These alleged deceptions can significantly reduce customers’ earnings in the annuity products they purchased.

Contact a Consumer Protection Attorney at Lieff Cabraser

If you have purchased an annuity issued by EquiTrust Life Insurance Company, American Equity, Midland National Life Insurance Company, or North American Company for Life and Health, and believe you may have been charged unexpected commissions or fees or been subjected to other unfair practices that may have reduced your annuity earnings, we invite you to complete our contact form below.

The information you provide will assist us in learning of the full extent of the alleged fraud and in obtaining damages for affected customers, including all profits that may have been unjustly earned by the companies. We will review your complaint for free and without any obligation on your part.


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Hello Kitty SanrioTown

Data security digital privacy

Hackers have obtained information on more than 3 million people who use Hello Kitty websites including SanrioTown.com, hellokitty.com, hellokitty.com.sg, hellokitty.com.my, hellokitty.in.th, and mymelody.com. The hackers obtained names, birth dates, genders, and email addresses. Even worse, the disclosure includes lightly-protected passwords, as well as the forgotten password questions and answers.

Why Many Allege that Sanrio is Liable

The Hello Kitty websites are operated by Tokyo-based Sanrio Company. Organizations such as Sanrio that hold personally identifiable information — particularly when it relates to children — owe a duty to safeguard this information and protect such information from being compromised, stolen, or misused.

Lieff Cabraser represents parents in nationwide class action lawsuits against device, app, and software creators for compromised and stolen personal data, including children’s private personal data, in the wake of serious failures to properly secure the data. If you fear your child’s private data was stolen or misused as a result of the Hello Kitty data breach, we would welcome a chance to talk to you about your legal rights. There is no charge or obligation for our review of your case.

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Rosetta Stone Subscription Renewal Overcharging Complaints Investigation

Rosetta Stone Subscription Fraud Complaints

Lieff Cabraser is a national law firm that represents consumers, including in cases where the consumer was sold services at illegally inflated prices or that were deceptively advertised or marketed.

We are currently investigating complaints of alleged unfair and deceptive practices by Rosetta Stone, the foreign language education company, relating to automatic subscription renewals. Users report being subjected to hidden, inflated auto-renewal subscription charges that are far higher than the charges indicated and paid at the time of their initial subscription purchases. Consumers have also complained that the they were not sufficiently notified that their subscriptions would be renewed at all.

Contact Us

If you have purchased a subscription through Rosetta Stone and experienced unanticipated or inflated renewal charges, or other problems with your account, we invite you to complete our contact form below. The information you provide will assist us in learning of the full extent of the alleged fraud and in potentially obtaining damages, including all profits that may have been unjustly earned, from Rosetta Stone for their subscribers. We will review your complaint for free and without any obligation on your part.


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Google Message Scanning

Apps

Lieff Cabraser is investigating claims that Google routinely scans email messages that are sent by non-Gmail users to Gmail users, analyzes the content of those messages and then shares it with third parties in order to target ads to Gmail users. Consumers who are not Gmail users feel that since they have never consented to this kind of use of their private information by Google, this alleged usage by Google constitutes a manifest violation of their privacy.

Lawyers Dedicated to Preserving Privacy

Lieff Cabraser is committed to ensuring that the fundamental right to privacy is respected and endures even as technology evolves.Our attorneys possess extensive experience and the requisite technological background to successfully assert and litigate all manner of privacy claims. We represent individuals in precedent-setting cases impacting tens of millions of Americans against prominent technology, social media, and entertainment corporations for alleged violations of digital privacy rights and the failure to protect critically-sensitive employee data.

Contact us

If you have a non-Gmail account that you have used to send messages to Gmail users, your messages may well have been scanned and the information therein shared with third parties in order to create targeted advertising in a violation of your privacy rights. We welcome the opportunity to review your case and assist you in protecting your digital privacy.Please use the form below to contact an attorney at Lieff Cabraser or call us toll-free and ask to speak to Lieff Cabraser attorney Nick Diamand at 1 888 321-1510. There is no charge or obligation for our review of your complaint.

Online Identity Protection

Abstract program code

Lieff Cabraser is investigating consumer complaints about paid identity protection services offered by IdentityForce and Metlife Defender. We also represent consumers who subscribed to LifeLock’s identity theft protection services in a nationwide class action lawsuit charging that LifeLock defrauded them.

Identity theft protection companies typically promise, in exchange for their fees, “complete protection” that gives consumers “the power to act before the damage is done” and “the power to prevent identity fraud.”Many consumers allege, however, that they received no value for their payments. The identity theft protection promises were untrue, the companies do not protect the personal information of their subscribers from hackers or criminals, and that these companies do an inferior job of providing the same theft protection services offered by banks and credit card companies, often for free.

The lawsuit against LifeLock specifically alleges that, contrary to its advertisements and statements, LifeLock:

  • Lacks a comprehensive monitoring network; and
  • Fails to provide “up-to-the-minute” alerts of suspicious activity.

Contact Us

Please contact an attorney at Lieff Cabraser to report your experience with any of these online privacy protection companies. The information you provide will assist us in learning of the full extent of the alleged fraud and in obtaining damages, including all profits unjustly earned, from these companies for their subscribers. There is no charge or obligation for our confidential review of your case.


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IdentityForce Privacy Protection

Abstract program code

Lieff Cabraser is investigating consumer complaints about IdentityForce’s paid identity protection services. IdentityForce promises “complete protection” that gives consumers “the power to act before the damage is done.”

Consumers complain that these promises are untrue, and that IdentityForce does not protect the personal information of its subscribers from hackers or criminals. Consumers further complain that IdentityForce does an inferior job of providing the same theft protection services that banks and credit card companies provide, often for free.

Contact Us

Please contact an attorney at Lieff Cabraser to report your experience with IdentityForce’s services. The information you provide will assist us in learning of the full extent of IdentityForce’s alleged fraud and in obtaining damages, including all profits unjustly earned, from IdentityForce for its subscribers. There is no charge or obligation for our confidential review of your case.


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