Lieff Cabraser Attorneys Join Law360 2017 Editorial Advisory Boards

Lieff Cabraser Attorneys Join Law360 2017 Editorial Advisory Boards

Lieff Cabraser partner Michael Miarmi has been named to Law360’s 2017 Securities Editorial Advisory Board, and Lieff Cabraser partner Jason Lichtman has been selected for the publication’s 2017 Privacy/Consumer Protection Editorial Advisory Board. Mr. Miarmi and Mr. Lichtman will join other members of the advisory board to provide feedback on Law360’s coverage of news, decisions, and trends and provide insight on how best to shape future reporting. [Read more…]

Class Action Fraud Lawsuit Filed Against North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company

Class action fraud lawsuit filed against North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance

Nashville, Tenn. – Lieff Cabraser partners Mark Chalos and Annika K. Martin, and Montgomery Ponder partners Luke Montgomery and Brad Ponder, have filed a class action lawsuit in Tennessee federal court on behalf of Marietta McClendon of Nashville, Tennessee alleging that North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company (NCM) cheated her family and potentially thousands of other life insurance customers, often minority individuals and families, for financial gain. [Read more…]

New Bill Focuses on Class Actions: What Does This Mean For Defense and Plaintiffs’ Attorneys?

New Bill Focuses on Class Actions: What Does This Mean For Defense and Plaintiffs’ Attorneys?

A new bill focusing on class actions was approved by the House Judiciary Committee on February 15th on a 19 to 12 vote. Known as the 2017 Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act (H.R. 985), the legislation was introduced February 9 by committee chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.). [Read more…]

Increased Active Participation of VW Class Members Sheds Light on Changes in Big Litigation

Increased Active Participation of VW Class Members Sheds Light on Changing Court System

Class member participation in the Volkswagen diesel emissions consumer fraud litigation has been increasingly active, and the court system has taken notice. VW diesel owners have robustly engaged in social media discussions, emailed the courts on a regular basis, and even called class counsel on their personal cell phones. [Read more…]

Focus On: Law360 Consumer Protection Group Of The Year Lieff Cabraser

Focus On: Law360 Consumer Protection Group Of The Year Lieff Cabraser

Law360 has published its in-depth review of Lieff Cabraser’s Consumer Protection practice group, selected by the publication as a “Practice Group of the Year.” As the publication noted, the firm “represented consumers in some of the most high-profile cases of the year, including the Volkswagen litigation where founding partner Elizabeth Cabraser headed the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee, representing the largest known consumer class settlement at $14.7 billion.” [Read more…]

Environmental Protection Agency Accuses Fiat Chrysler of Cheating Diesel Emissions Laws

Diesel Emissions Fraud

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a notice of violation to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles for allegedly cheating on federal emissions standards and contributing to pollution, in violation of the Clean Air Act. At least 104,000 diesel vehicles have allegedly been programmed with secret software that allowed for illegal excess emissions of nitrogen oxides. These vehicles include light-duty model year 2014, 2015, and 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks equipped with 3.0-liter diesel engines sold in the United States. [Read more…]

Lieff Cabraser Files Amicus Brief on Behalf of Public Justice in Uber Forced Arbitration Case

Lieff Cabraser Files Amicus Brief in Support of Public Justice in Uber Forced Arbitration Case

As reported by Law360, Public Justice (represented by Lieff Cabraser) has filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit urging the affirmation of the district court’s decision denying a motion to compel arbitration in a consumer lawsuit against the Uber ride-sharing service. In the case, Uber seeks to impose mandatory arbitration requirements on consumers — contract terms of which they had no notice and to which they did not affirmatively agree. The brief notes that this is not only contrary to longstanding law, but also fundamentally unfair: Companies should not be permitted to force consumers making online transactions to abide by terms to which they do not agree, simply because those terms are available elsewhere online. [Read more…]

Wells Fargo Seeking to Force Defrauded Customers into Arbitration in Attempt to Sidestep Lawsuits over False Accounts Scandal

Wells Fargo Seeking to Force Defrauded Customers into Arbitration in Attempt to Sidestep Lawsuits over False Accounts Scandal

Banking giant Wells Fargo is attempting to sidestep a multitude of fraud lawsuits by forcing banking customers instead into private arbitration. Under the bank’s widely-reported false accounts scandal, some two million sham accounts were opened under customers’ names without their knowledge or consent. As noted by the New York Times, “This is not the first time Wells Fargo has been accused of trying to use arbitration to its advantage.” [Read more…]

Lieff Cabraser: Consumer Product Safety Commission Recalls 2.8 Million Samsung Top-Loading Washing Machines Over Explosion Risks

CPSC Recalls 2.8 Million Samsung Top-Loading Washing Machines Over Explosion Risks

SAN FRANCISCO – The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), with the cooperation of Samsung, is recalling 2.8 million of Samsung’s top-loading washing machines in the wake of over 700 reports of exploding washing machines resulting in at least nine injuries. The recall covers 34 of Samsung’s top-loading models sold from March 2011 through November 2016. [Read more…]

Wells Fargo Loses Arbitration Bid Over Deceptive Overdraft Fees

Wells Fargo Loses Arbitration Big Over Deceptive Overdraft Fees

Mega-bank Wells Fargo has lost a bid to force multidistrict class action over overdraft fee abuse claims into arbitration. The San Francisco-based bank is dealing with numerous lawsuits accusing it of manipulating debit card purchases to maximize overdraft fee revenue in violation of consumer protection laws. Law360 has reported that “the bank has moved to compel arbitration several times with regard to two cases that originated in Florida and California.” [Read more…]

The FDA Wants Consumers to Report Problems with MedWatch

FDA Invites Consumers to Report Problems to MedWatch

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has enhanced its MedWatch program and is actively asking consumers to report adverse events and serious safety issues with regard to FDA regulated products, whether they be medications, medical devices, or food products. The FDA encourages strongly consumers to use the MedWatch platform, first created in 1993, to report experiences with problematic products that seem to have unexpected side effects, injurious medical errors, therapeutic failures, issues with product quality, and any other safety hazards. [Read more…]

Spokeo Still Standing: No Sign Of A Circuit Split

Spokeo Still Standing: No Sign Of A Circuit Split

In an expert analysis article published by Law360 (subscription) entitled “Spokeo Still Standing: No Sign Of A Circuit Split,” Lieff Cabraser attorneys Nicholas Diamand and Andrew Kaufman review the U.S. Supreme Court’s May decision in Spokeo Inc. v. Robins, et al. The decision “reaffirmed that, under principles of federal jurisdiction, invasions of privacy give plaintiffs standing to assert their rights in federal court,” wrote Diamand and Kaufman. [Read more…]

$68 Million Settlement in LifeLock Identity Theft Protection Fraud Case

$68 Million Settlement in LifeLock Identity Theft Protection Fraud Case

Lieff Cabraser represents consumers in a nationwide class action lawsuit charging that LifeLock, Inc. defrauded them with regard to identity theft protection services. A California federal judge has granted final approval to a $68 million settlement of this lawsuit, based on consumer complaints centering on accusations that LifeLock delivered false statements about its services and failed to alert customers on a timely basis of potential identity theft. An estimated 3 million consumer class members will each receive $20 as part of the settlement. [Read more…]

State Farm Racketeering Case Now Set As Class Action Suit

Judge gavel, scales of justice and law books in court

Lawsuit alleges State Farm campaigned illegally to elect a judge to vote against previous $1.05 billion judgment against the company

As reported by Law360 (subscription) and other news outlets, U.S. District Court Judge David Herndon has granted class action status to a lawsuit brought by Lieff Cabraser and co-counsel on behalf of 4.7 million State Farm policyholders that alleges State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. carried out a racketeering enterprise aimed at defrauding the policyholders of a $1.05 billion judgment by getting a new judge elected to the Illinois Supreme court who would rule in State Farm’s favor to scuttle the judgment, previously approved by the Illinois appellate court. [Read more…]

Daniel Hutchinson Comments on the Fight or Settle Question Facing Offending Companies in TCPA Consumer Disputes

Daniel Hutchinson Comments on TCPA Consumer Disputes

Numerous companies have been hit with lawsuits regarding their alleged violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”). In these cases, the complaints involve robocalls, unsolicited text messages, and unwanted phone calls plaguing consumers. The big question for defendants facing these kinds of lawsuits is whether to push back on the accusations of offensive, intrusive spam marketing via litigation or to just quickly settle matters. [Read more…]

Bosch Said to Have Played Critical Role in Volkswagen Diesel Emissions Scandal Since 2008

Bosch Involvement in VW Diesel Emissions Scandal

Auto supplier Robert Bosch has been accused of conspiring with Volkswagen to produce the technology that would help the German automaker fraudulently pass standard emissions tests in its diesel vehicles. Numerous media outlets, such as The New York Times, Fortune, Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters, and Jalopnik, have reported that Bosch asked VW to provide legal protection while the emissions cheating software was in development eight years ago. Despite VW’s reported refusal to indemnify Bosch, Bosch continued with the production of this defeat device. [Read more…]

Money Over Cars: 210,000 VW Diesel Owners Decide on Vehicle Buyback

Money Over Cars: 210,000 VW Diesel Owners Decide on Vehicle Buyback

Out of the 475,000 Volkswagen 2.0 liter diesel engine owners, approximately 210,000 individuals have chosen to partake in the $14.7 billion settlement that is awaiting final court approval. Under the settlement terms, VW and Audi owners have the option of selling their cars back to the dealership or having them fixed to meet U.S. environmental standards and clean air laws. In addition, owners will receive $5,100 to $10,000 compensation for their time and trouble during this scandal. [Read more…]

$30.4 Million TCPA Settlement Against Wells Fargo

TCPA Settlement Announced Against Wells Fargo

Judge Richard W. Story of the Northern District of Georgia has granted preliminary approval to a $30.4 million settlement with Wells Fargo on consumer claims that the bank violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) with the use of an autodialer, artificial voice technology, or prerecorded messages to call cellphones about account overdrafts. [Read more…]

Consumers Overwhelmingly Want Access to Legal System Currently Denied by Major Banks

Bank Misconduct

A 2016 study by The Pew Charitable Trusts notes that consumer disputes with banks over fees and policies are on the rise. Of particular concern are mandatory arbitration clauses found in 90% of bank account agreements. These forced arbitration provisions steer consumers to third-party decision-makers whose decisions are usually binding, giving the consumer limited or no opportunity to appeal. Such provisions also prohibit consumer bank customers from seeking any remedy in an impartial court of law. [Read more…]

Judge Rakoff Calls Consumer “Consent” to Online Arbitration Agreements a Legal Fiction

Scales of Justice in courtroom

In a court ruling regarding alleged Uber price-fixing, U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff states in no uncertain terms that when it comes to online arbitration agreements, consumer consent is nothing more than a “legal fiction.” [Read more…]