Overview

Mayer Brown’s Class Action practice was recognized by Law360 as “Practice Group of the Year” for 2016 & 2017.

The misuse of consumer litigation & class actions poses a significant threat in today's business world. Statutes and rules intended to provide a forum for groups of small but legitimate claims have become the weapon of choice for leveraging masses of merit-less suits into unjustified settlements. Knowledge of and experience in defending these complex matters is essential to success in what can be "bet-the-company" litigation.

More than 40 lawyers in offices across the country and around the world have successfully defended consumer litigation and class actions in a broad range of industries in trial and appellate proceedings in federal, state, and international tribunals.
Highlights
Class Action Group of the Year 2016 & 2017

Praxis

Our lawyers have handled a variety of matters for diverse clients in wide-ranging industries, including pharmaceutical manufacturers, telephone and internet service providers, mortgage and lending institutions, and consumer products manufacturers. The following represent a handful of examples of our success: 

Airlines

  • Conboy v. United Air Lines, Inc., Thomas v. United Air Lines, Inc. Defense of purported class actions alleging breach of contract in connection with selling airline tickets subject to flight delays, cancellations and overbooking.
  • Morici v. United Airlines, Inc. Defense of United Airlines in class action alleging addition of fuel surcharge to passengers' ticket price violated the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act and federal and state antitrust laws. Successfully settled for a de minimis amount after federal claims were dismissed and case was remanded to state court.

Automobile Lending & Manufacturing

  • Jackson v. Chrysler Financial Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging Illinois Consumer Fraud Act violations in connection with disclosures of service warranty contracts. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim granted. Affirmed on appeal.
  • Cameron v. Nissan Motor Credit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging Illinois Consumer Fraud Act violations in connection with disclosures of service warranty contracts.
  • Crumbley v. American Honda Finance Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging fraudulent disclosure of service warranty terms. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim granted.
  • McWilliams v. Chrysler Financial Corp. Defense of purported class action challenging notice given in connection with automobile repossessions in Illinois. Class allegations dismissed; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Cemail v. Chrysler Financial Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging Truth in Lending Act ("TILA") and Illinois Consumer Fraud Act violations in connection with disclosures of service warranty contracts.
  • Dublin v. U-Can Rent, Inc. Case coordination in defense of U-Can Rent, Inc., a subsidiary of Chrysler Financial Corporation, being sued in North Carolina in a class action arising out of alleged violations of the North Carolina Retail Installment Sales Act. Class certification defeated.
  • Vignocchi v. Chrysler Credit Corp. Defense of purported 50-state class action under Illinois Consumer Fraud Act challenging disclosure of amounts paid for extended warranty contracts in standard retail installment sales agreement. Summary judgment against plaintiffs granted.
  • Marek v. Chrysler Credit Corp. Defense of class action seeking damages for alleged non-disclosure involving extended warranty service. Truth In Lending Act claims against Chrysler Credit dismissed.
  • Motley v. Mancari Chrysler Plymouth, Inc. and Chrysler Credit Corp. Defense of class action alleging that dealer and Chrysler Credit misrepresented price of extended warranty contracts in standard retail installment sales agreement. Claims alleged under Illinois Consumer Fraud Act and Sales Finance Agency Act. Plaintiff's motion for class certification defeated.
  • Schmidt v. Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of Consumer Leasing Act challenging disclosure of disposition fee. Case resolved through offer of judgment mooting claim.
  • Mosiman v. BMW Financial Services NA, Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging Illinois Consumer Fraud Act violations regarding Illinois sales/use tax disclosures in automobile lease contracts. Motion to dismiss granted.
  • Falknor v. Toyota Motor Credit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging Illinois Consumer Fraud Act violations regarding sales/use tax disclosures in automobile lease contracts. Motion to dismiss granted.
  • Bevilacqua v. Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging miscalculation of excess mileage charges.
  • Hamilton v. FirstMerit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of the federal Consumer Leasing Act and state law in connection with disclosures and early termination charges in consumer automobile leases. Class allegations dismissed; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Michelson v. Citicorp National Services, Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging that defendant's use of the Rule of 78s to calculate early termination charges violates the federal Consumer Leasing Act and that defendant's failure to pay interest on security deposits given in connection with consumer automobile leases violates New Jersey law. Class allegations dismissed; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Spina v. Toyota Motor Credit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that defendant's failure to pay interest on security deposits given in connection with consumer automobile leases violates Illinois law. Motion to dismiss complaint for failure to state a claim granted. Affirmed on appeal.
  • Tolentino v. Citicorp National Services, Inc. Defense and successful settlement of class action under Missouri Merchandising Practices Act challenging disclosures and early termination formula of consumer automobile lease.
  • Haaker v. Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of federal Consumer Leasing Act in connection with late payment charges in automobile leasing contracts. Class allegations dismissed; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Leshin v. Key Bank USA, N.A. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of the federal Consumer Leasing Act and state law in connection with disclosures and early termination charges in consumer automobile leases. Class certification defeated; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Tarnoff v. American Honda Finance Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging insufficient warranty disclosure and that defendant's failure to pay interest on security deposits violates state law. Motion to dismiss security deposit claims granted.
  • Etta v. Mercedes-Benz Credit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that lessor's early termination formula is an unreasonable penalty and violates the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act. Motion to dismiss complaint in its entirety for failure to state a claim granted.
  • Kedziora v. Citicorp National Services, Inc. Defense of class action under the federal Consumer Leasing Act challenging disclosure and reasonableness of early termination charges in automobile lease. Several disclosure claims dismissed, summary judgment granted on counterclaim against class representative, and court allowed defendant to assert counterclaims against delinquent class members as a set off to small judgment in favor of narrowed class on sole successful claim.
  • Steinmetz v. Toyota Motor Credit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of federal Consumer Leasing Act and state law based on defendant's failure to pay interest on security deposits given in connection with consumer automobile leases. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim granted.
  • Finley v. Mercedes-Benz Credit Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that consumers are deceived into paying use tax on leased vehicles when Illinois law requires the owner-lessor to pay said tax. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim granted.
  • Wiskup v. U.B. Vehicle Leasing, Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging, among other things, that termination charges and unearned profits are not properly disclosed and that defendant must pay interest on consumer automobile lease security deposits. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim granted.
  • Black v. Mitsubishi Motors Credit of America, Inc. Defense and successful settlement of class action under Consumer Leasing Act and California deceptive trade practices statute challenging disclosures in consumer automobile lease.
  • Chrysler Credit Corp. v. Oglesby. Defense and successful settlement of class action counterclaim under Consumer Leasing Act challenging early termination provisions in automobile lease.
  • Highsmith v. Chrysler Credit Corp. Defense and successful settlement of class action under Consumer Leasing Act challenging early termination provisions in automobile lease.
  • Blank v. Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. Defense of 50-state class action alleging that NMAC violated disclosure provisions of, and imposed penalties and other unlawful charges under, the Consumer Leasing Act, various state consumer protection statutes and common law. Case settled on advantageous terms.
  • Hoyer v. Honda. Defense of purported nationwide class action alleging that failure to include airbags in vehicles made them defective.
  • Bohlman v. American Honda Motor Co. Defense of purported consumer class action against Honda alleging that kickstands on certain motorcycles are defective. Complaint dismissed for failure to state a claim. No appeal taken.
  • Weiss v. Ford Motor Co. Defense of class action under the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act and common law for damages arising from alleged defects in Ford-installed car telephones in new Ford cars.
  • Wilkinson v. Bayerische Motoren Werke, A.G. Defense of purported nationwide class action against BMW alleging fraud in the failure to disclose certain repairs to new vehicles prior to sale. Mayer Brown represented BMW on appeal of a related case in which the US Supreme Court overturned an excessive punitive damages award.
  • Citibank (South Dakota) Re: McCauley. Defense of several class actions against client who jointly marketed a credit card with an auto manufacturer which earned points toward the purchase of a new vehicle. Plaintiffs asserted that the program was improperly terminated. Case filed in Chicago was removed from state court and then transferred to the State of Washington.

Consumer Insurance

  • Snyder v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Ins. Co. Appellate representation in nationwide class action alleging breach of contract and Illinois Consumer Fraud Act violations in specifying the use in repair estimates of parts made by companies other than the original equipment manufacturer.
  • Jordan v. Central National Ins. Co. of Omaha. Defense of insurer in purported class action in federal court in Georgia alleging violations of federal and state law in connection with the sale of "non-filing" insurance to purchasers of jewelry on credit.
  • Loveless v. Central National Ins. Co. of Omaha. Defense of a number of purported class actions filed against Mississippi banks and their insurers alleging that the forced placement of insurance on bank customers with automobile loans violates the Truth in Lending Act, RICO and Mississippi state law.
  • Gallagher v. American Health & Life Ins. Co. Defense of class action involving AHLIC's alleged residual liability to fixed annuity life insurance policyholders after the company to which the policies were transferred became insolvent.

Consumer Lending

  • Naeem v. Fremont Investment & Loan. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of Illinois Interest Act. Motion to dismiss granted.
  • Fabricant v. Sears Roebuck & Co. Defense of purported nationwide class action alleging violations of the Truth In Lending Act in connection with insurance disclosures for credit card program.
  • Rochon v. Citicorp Mortgage, Inc. Defense of class action challenging CMI's purchase of force-placed insurance under the Truth in Lending Act and state law. Class allegations dismissed; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Kirkwood v. The Northern Trust Co. Defense and successful settlement of class action alleging that Northern Trust improperly excluded from finance charge certain fees in violation of the Truth in Lending Act and the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act.
  • Uchumi v. Diners Club International. Defense of purported class action alleging that Diners Club International, a franchisor of credit cards, was liable for the misdeeds of its franchisee, Diners Africa, in Kenya, Africa. Case dismissed on successful forum non conveniens motion.
  • Romaker v. CrossLand Mortgage Corp. Defense of class action under the Truth in Lending Act challenging computer error in calculation of finance charge and amount financed.
  • Citicorp Mortgage Re: Rochon. Defense of a purported nationwide class action challenging client's purchase of force-placed insurance under the Truth in Lending Act ("TILA") and state law. The class allegations were dismissed and the case settled on an individual basis for a nominal sum.
  • Citibank (South Dakota) Re: Pehr. Defense of a purported class action asserting that client made improper credit insurance charges as part of a preferred credit card offered by Sizes Unlimited, a retail store. Case settled for a nominal sum on an individual plaintiff basis.

Consumer Products

  • Carter v. Unilever United States, Inc. and Conopco, Inc. Defense of Unilever and its subsidiary, Conopco, in putative nationwide class action challenging marketing claims made for a consumer product. Suit piggybacked on Federal Trade Commission consent decree in which Conopco admitted to no liability, but agreed to make certain changes in its marketing for the product. Case settled favorably to client.

Fair Debt Collection

  • Baim v. Evanston Radiologists, Ltd. Defense of purported class action alleging that creditor used name of collection agency to collect its own debt violating to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Motion for summary judgment granted.
  • Larson v. Evanston Northwestern Healthcare Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that creditor used name of collection agency to collect its own debt violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Motion for summary judgment granted.
  • Morency v. Evanston Northwestern Healthcare Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that creditor used name of collection agency to collect its own debt violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
  • Shore v. Consumer Financial Services. Defense of purported class action alleging collection letter violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Plaintiff voluntarily dismissed action.
  • Ross v. Consumer Financial Services. Defense of purported class action alleging collection letter violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
  • Friedman v. Textron Financial. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act by secured lender/assignee. Motion to dismiss granted and appeal withdrawn.
  • Matek v. Evanston Hospital. Defense of purported class action alleging, among other things, that the addition of a collection fee to unpaid hospital accounts assigned to collection agencies for collection violates the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Class allegations dismissed, and plaintiff voluntarily dismissed individual claims.

Financial Services

  • Zannini v. Ameritrade, Doc. 975, No. 975 filed in the District Court of Douglas County, Nebraska. Plaintiffs brought a purported class action to recover damages allegedly caused by Ameritrade's failure to execute stock and options trades within a reasonable time due to system inadequacies. The class period extended over six years. Plaintiffs asserted fraud, negligent misrepresentation, negligence, consumer protection and breach of contract causes of action. On August 13, 2004, the District Court granted summary judgment dismissing the class action allegations of the complaint and all causes of action except breach of contract. The Court further stayed the plaintiffs' individual breach of contract actions based upon an arbitration provision in the customer agreement that applies if and when class certification is denied. The case presented a risk of very substantial liability for the Client. It is now effectively finished. We also were successful in stopping all discovery other than the production of a few documents relating to the six individual trades at issue.
  • Keener v. Ameritrade, Case No. 8:03-cv-00421, filed in the U.S. District Court of Nebraska. Plaintiff brought a purported class action seeking damages for Ameritrade's alleged failure to obtain the best price for its customers in securities transactions. Plaintiff alleged that Ameritrade had an improper relationship with a clearing broker-dealer (equity stake and overlapping directors) and, as a result, directed orders to that broker-dealer rather than other broker-dealers that were totally independent of Ameritrade and may have filled orders at a better price. On July 19, 2004, the District Court denied class certification and stayed resolution of plaintiff's individual claims based upon a mandatory arbitration provision that applied if and when class certification was denied. Plaintiff apparently has decided not to pursue his individual claims.
  • In re Nicor Class Action Litigation. Defense of Nicor in a set of consolidated class action cases brought in connection with mercury spills at the homes of Nicor Gas customers. The court dismissed the original complaint, leading to favorable settlement.
  • Robinson v. Oppenheimer and Co., Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and fraud in connection with $50 fee charged to customers who transferred their accounts to other financial institutions. Case voluntarily dismissed with prejudice.
  • Zimmer v. Bank of America Illinois. Defense of a purported class action for breach of contract and violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act arising from fees charged to Individual Retirement Account customers.
  • Wright v. Chicago Municipal Employees Credit Union. Defense of municipal employees' credit union in class action claiming that the credit union's practice of taking a security interest in refunds from the employees' retirement funds to secure loans to the employees violated federal and state law. Dismissed on summary judgment and affirmed on appeal.
  • CitiMortgage, Inc Re: Black. Defense of a purported nationwide class action complaint alleging that client violated the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) by failing to respond in timely manner to her "qualified written request". After presenting our defenses orally to class counsel, case settled for a nominal sum on an individual basis. Client never needed to respond to the complaint or even move to dismiss.
  • CitiMortgage, Inc. Re: Watson. Defense of a purported class action complaint challenging the payment by client of yield spread premiums to mortgage brokers as illegal referral fees. All of the plaintiff's class claims have been defeated on motions to dismiss.
  • Morgan-Vaughn and Dolan v. ABN AMRO Bank N.V. et al. Defense of purported nationwide class action involving sales of brokered Callable CDs. Plaintiffs allege, among other things, that they bought Callable CDs without having received adequate disclosures of the features and risks of their investment. Plaintiffs have asserted claims against the banks issuing the CDs for : (i) violations of the Illinois Securities Laws;(ii) violation of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act; and (iii) common law fraud; and (iv) negligent misrepresentation.
  • Meeks v. LaSalle Bank N.A. Defense of purported nationwide class action involves sales of brokered Callable CDs. Plaintiffs allege that they purchased Callable CDs but did not receive adequate disclosures of the features and risks of their investment. Plaintiffs have asserted claims against LaSalle for breach of contract and violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act.
  • Buchanan v. LaSalle Bank, N.A. et al. This purported class action involves sales of brokered Callable CDs. Plaintiffs allege that they purchased Callable CDs but did not receive adequate disclosures of the features and risks of their investment. Plaintiffs voluntarily dismissed their claims against LaSalle.
  • Baumgartner v. ABN AMRO Holding, N.V. et al. Defense of purported Florida class action in which the plaintiffs alleged, among other things, that the callable CDs were issued and controlled by the defendants who did not provide full disclosure of the features and risks of the CDs. The plaintiff alleged: (i) violation of the Florida Securities laws; and (ii) violation of the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act. After defendants filed their motion to dismiss, the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the case.

Insurance Coverage for Class Actions
As consumer class action litigation becomes more and prevalent, clients must maximize all of their resources to defend themselves successfully. Insurance coverage for class actions, including the cost of defending against such claims, is an invaluable asset that often must be extracted from hesitant -- or more often intransigent -- insurers. Mayer Brown has an unparalleled record of success in litigation against insurers and obtaining coverage against class action allegations:

  • Hartford Fire Ins. Co. v. Whitehall Convalescent & Nursing Home, Inc. Appellate opinion holding that insurer had duty to defend and indemnify policyholder against class action litigation for RICO, fraud, consumer fraud and alleged fiduciary breaches pertaining to claimed medication overcharges and false billing.
  • Knoll Pharmaceutical Co. v. Automobile Ins. Co. $51 million judgment against insurers for defense and indemnity of class action litigation by consumers and third-party payors for alleged antitrust, RICO, fraud and consumer fraud violations in the marketing and sale of pharmaceuticals and alleged disparagement of competitors.
  • In re Vencor Inc. Resolved insurance and reinsurance disputes involving coverage for underlying attempted nationwide class action litigation of nursing facility residents.
  • In re Helwig v. Vencor, Inc. Resolution of insurance reimbursement claims for defense and settlement of class action securities litigation.
  • Perfection Corp. v. Lochinvar Corp. Case involving $100 million class action dispute and settlement and subsequent litigation with maker of failed dip tubes used with water heater tanks.
  • Wellick v. Fremont Compensation Ins. Group. Litigation involving attempted class action over manner in which workers' compensation subrogation recoveries were pursued.

Mortgage Lending

  • Mortgage, Inc. Defense of purported nationwide class action alleging breach of contract and fiduciary duty, fraud, conspiracy and violations of deceptive trade practices statutes for disclosures of private mortgage insurance charges. Class allegations dismissed; case settled on an individual basis.
  • Perez v. Citicorp Mortgage, Inc. Defense of purported nationwide class action alleging breach of contract and violations of Illinois Consumer Fraud Act for disclosures of private mortgage insurance charges. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim granted. Affirmed on appeal.
  • Jefferson v. Security Pacific Financial Servs., Inc. Defense of purported nationwide class action alleging that Security Pacific improperly excluded certain fees from finance charge for disbursement of mortgage loan proceeds. Claims alleged under the Truth in Lending Act and state law. Motion for class certification defeated and summary judgment against plaintiff granted.
  • Barnes v. First Nationwide Bank. Defense of class action alleging that First Nationwide requires mortgagors to deposit excessive amounts in escrow accounts to pay for real estate taxes and insurance in violation of Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act and common law.
  • Lake v. First Nationwide Bank. Defense of class action alleging that First Nationwide requires mortgagors to deposit excessive amounts in escrow accounts to pay for real estate taxes and insurance in violation of Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act and common law. This case is similar to Barnes.
  • Bay v. Citicorp Mortgage, Inc. Defense of 50-state class action challenging the method used to calculate escrow deposit requirements for residential real estate mortgages under Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act and common law. Resolved by a settlement favorable to the client in 1995.
  • Citibank, FSB Re: Saldana. Defense of mortgage discrimination case asserting that Citibank engaged in redlining in denying plaintiff's loan application. Summary judgment in favor of client.
  • Citibank, FSB Re: Jones. Defense of mortgage discrimination case asserting that an African-American couple was turned down for a mortgage due to alleged racial discrimination. The case was settled on favorable terms.
  • Citibank, FSB Re: Buycks-Roberson. Defense of mortgage discrimination class action lawsuit that consisted of all African-Americans whose loan applications were denied over a five year period in the Chicago metropolitan area. After full discovery, the case was settled on favorable terms and without having to pay damages to any class member.
  • Citibank, FSB Re: Latimore. Defense of mortgage discrimination case alleging racial discrimination against an African-American applicant. Summary judgment obtained in favor of client. The case was affirmed on appeal by the Seventh Circuit. In affirming summary judgment in favor of Citibank, the Seventh Circuit held that the McDonald Douglass standard for a prima facie case of race discrimination did not apply in such a lending discrimination case.
  • Citicorp Mortgage Re: Cutler. Defense of a purported 50-state class action challenging client's escrow fund and force-placed insurance practices under RESPA, TILA, FDCPA and RICO, as well as a host of state law claims. Case dismissed without prejudice before client even responded; plaintiff never re-filed.
  • Citicorp Mortgage Re: Chateau Lorraine. Defense of nationwide commercial mortgage escrow class action. The case settled on an individual basis for a nominal sum.
  • CitiMortgage, Inc. Re: Wenzel. Defense of a purported class action complaint (consolidated with 37 other parallel cases) challenging the propriety of charging a document preparation fee in connection with mortgage loan transactions. Plaintiff alleges the charging of such a fee constitutes the unauthorized practice of law. Plaintiff's claims were defeated on a motion to dismiss and the matter is currently on appeal before the Illinois First District Appellate Court.

Pharmaceutical Companies

  • Acevedo v. Abbot Laboratories, et al. Successful defense of pharmaceutical manufacturer in consumer class action for medical monitoring and other damages alleging marketing fraud and product defects.
  • In re Synthroid Marketing Litigation. Successful defense of pharmaceutical company in nationwide consumer class action alleging fraud in connection with the marketing of the second-most prescribed drug in the U.S.
  • Long v. Purdue Frederick Co. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of the North Carolina Unfair Trade Practices Act on the grounds that the defendant drug companies engaged in a discriminatory and unlawful pricing structure favoring certain mail-order pharmacies and HMO outlets over local pharmacies and drug stores.

Telephone & Internet Service Providers

  • AOL. Defense of online service provider in proceedings brought by state attorneys general in more than 100 class action lawsuits across the country alleging problems experienced in accessing AOL service.
  • AOL Access Cases. Defense of online service provider in more than 80 overlapping purported nationwide class actions filed in 1997 when AOL introduced flat-rate/unlimited use Internet service. Mayer Brown asserted substantive and procedural challenges in the various actions and were ultimately able to achieve a highly favorable nationwide settlement. Mayer, Brown successfully defended the settlement against multiple objectors and collateral attack, establishing helpful precedent concerning Internet notice of class action settlements and principles of collateral estoppel, and appearing before the Ohio Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, the Nevada Supreme Court, and the Supreme Court of the United States. Summary judgment on the merits was also won against the only group of opt-outs that brought suit. That decision was upheld on appeal before the Ohio Court of Appeals and Supreme Court.
  • AOL Pop-Up Advertising Case. Defense of class action suit in Florida state court alleging breach of contract based upon AOL's presentation of pop-up advertisements. Mayer Brown successfully persuaded the Florida Court of Appeals to enforce AOL's forum selection clause, which required filing suit in Virginia. Virginia does not permit class actions. The case was never pursued after it was dismissed in Florida.
  • AOL Telephone Charges Case. Defense of class action in federal court in Tampa, Florida challenging the adequacy of AOL's warnings regarding telephone charges for connecting to AOL. Mayer Brown successfully opposed class certification and achieved a very favorable settlement of the case while an interlocutory appeal was pending.
  • CompuServe Rebate Case. Defense of class action in New Jersey state court alleging consumer fraud based upon CompuServe's rebate program in which it provided a rebate against the purchase of a new computer for customers who agreed to subscribe to CompuServe for three years at premium rates. Mayer Brown won a non-binding arbitration of the matter and then achieved a very nationwide settlement of the claim.
  • South Austin Community Council Coalition v. SBC. Defense of lawsuit brought on behalf of a class of telephone consumers to enjoin the merger of SBC and Ameritech. After the Northern District of Illinois dismissed the complaint, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed based on the exemption for common carrier mergers in Section 7 of the Clayton Act. The Supreme Court subsequently denied the plaintiffs' petition for certiorari.
  • Goldwasser v. Ameritech Corp. Defense of lawsuit brought on behalf of a class of telephone consumers alleging that rates had increased and service had deteriorated because Ameritech's assistance to competitors-as mandated by the Telecommunications Act of 1996-was deficient and thereby impeded competition. After the Northern District of Illinois dismissed the complaint for lack of standing, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed based on the filed rate doctrine, failure to state an antitrust claim, and the conflict between antitrust litigation over inter-carrier disputes and the 1996 Act's remedial scheme.
  • Gates, Wise & Schlosser PC v. Illinois Bell Telephone Co. Defense of lawsuit in which we obtained dismissal of a consumer class action complaint alleging that a recently enacted provision of the Illinois Telecommunications Act violated provisions of the Illinois Constitution and sought hundreds of millions of dollars in refunds.
  • Manning v. Maxell, et al. Defense of Maxell in a putative nationwide class action alleging various consumer fraud and warranty claims regarding sales of VHS cassette tapes. The court granted our motion to dismiss the original complaint.

Other Matters

  • In re Nicor Class Action Litigation. Defense of Nicor in a set of consolidated class action cases brought in connection with mercury spills at the homes of Nicor Gas customers. The court dismissed the original complaint, leading to favorable settlement.
  • Winfrey v. Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that creditor's proofs of claim misrepresent the value of the portion of the claim secured by the debtors' vehicles.
  • Fisher v. Lechmere, Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging failure to file reaffirmation agreements in bankruptcy courts.
  • Kim v. Chase Manhattan Bank. Defense of purported class action alleging fraud and violations of the Bankruptcy Code in connection with the sale of accounts of discharged debtors.
  • Mosenkis v. CompUSA Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act in connection with manufacturer rebates on software.
  • Rolnick v. Evanston Northwestern Healthcare Corp. Defense of purported class action alleging that hospital violated the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act by failing to disclose a collection fee and failing to pass on a negotiated insurer discount after a patient was denied coverage. Motion to dismiss granted.
  • Ottinger v. Bertelsmann Music Group, Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging that manufacturers and distributors of recorded music compact discs engaged in a price fixing conspiracy in violation of various state consumer protection and deceptive trade practices acts.
  • SMH-US and SMH-Switzerland. Defense of two purported class actions brought against the manufacturer of certain watches. Plaintiffs asserted a number of theories, including consumer fraud. Motion to dismiss complaint in its entirety for failure to state a claim granted in the Northern District of Illinois. The second case was dismissed by the federal district court in New Orleans, and the dismissal was affirmed by the 5th Circuit.
  • Taylor v. Aquion Partners Ltd. Partnership Defense of purported class action alleging installation of water treatment devices during the 3-day rescission period violated the California Water Treatment Device Act. Class certification defeated.
  • Littau v. Circuit City Stores West Coast, Inc. Defense of purported class action alleging that retailers of personal computer systems falsely advertised the economic value and other attributes of software bundled and sold with the systems.
  • Reed v. Philip Morris Inc. Defense of a cigarette wholesaler in purported class action against various tobacco manufacturers and industry groups. The complaint alleges concealment of information regarding nicotine addictiveness and the risks of tobacco use, and asserts fraud, conspiracy, and products liability claims relating to tobacco products.
  • In re Computer Monitor Litigation. Defense of purported class action alleging that manufacturers and retailers of computer monitors falsely advertised the viewable screen size of those monitors.
  • Roman v. Wynn Oil Co. Defense of class action under the Truth in Lending Act, RICO, and state law alleging that Wynn's sale of a product kit with warranty is an unauthorized sale of insurance.
  • Verb v. Nokia Mobile Phones Co. Defense of class action against manufacturer of portable cellular telephones alleging health hazards associated with radio frequency waves. Motion to dismiss for failure to state a cause of action granted.
  • Citicorp Mortgage, Inc. Re: Branch. Defense of a purported nationwide class action alleging violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act. Plaintiff claimed that client breached its contract and engaged in consumer fraud by failing to adjust her escrow account during a Chapter 13 bankruptcy plan. Plaintiff settled on an individual basis for a nominal sum after receiving our motion to dismiss and without filing any opposition brief.