Consumer Protection

Dell False Discounts

Result: $50 cash payments to affected consumers
Year: 2011

Dell Instant-Off Bogus Discount Litigation

Lieff Cabraser served as Class Counsel representing a certified class of online consumers in California who purchased certain Dell computers based on the advertisement of an instant-off (or "slash-through") discount. The complaint challenged Dell’s pervasive use of "slash-through" reference prices in its online marketing. Plaintiffs alleged that these "slash through" reference prices were interpreted by consumers as representing Dell’s former or regular sales prices, and that such reference prices (and corresponding representations of "savings") were false because Dell rarely, if ever, sold its products at such prices.

In October 2011, the Court approved a settlement that provided a $50 payment to each class member that submitted a timely and valid claim. In addition, in response to the lawsuit, Dell changed its methodology for consumer online advertising, eliminating the use of "slash-through" references prices.