Constraints On Calif. Credit Card Class Actions

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Law360, New York (June 23, 2011) -- In the wake of Pineda v. Williams-Sonoma Stores Inc. (2011) 51 Cal. 4th 524, Divisions One and Five of California's Second Appellate District have published two opinions that put some constraints on Song-Beverly Credit Card Act (SBCCA) class action litigation.

The first case is Archer v. United Rentals, Inc. (May 19, 2011, B219089) __ Cal.App.4th ___, [2011 BL 134609, 2011 DJDAR 7158]. In Archer, the trial court under Judge Anthony J. Mohr awarded summary adjudication to the defendants on the plaintiffs' claim under California's Unfair Competition Law (UCL), finding that the plaintiffs lacked standing to proceed "because they did not lose money or property."

After a thorough discussion of the California Supreme Court's recent decision in Kwikset Corp. v. Superior Court (2011) 51 Cal. 4th 310, Division One ruled that the plaintiffs "[had] failed to demonstrate" how the alleged invasion of privacy "translate[d] into a loss of money or property." The trial court's summary adjudication was affirmed. Archer v. United Rentals Inc. (May 19, 2011, B219089) __ Cal.App.4th ___, [2011 BL 134609, 2011 DJDAR 7158] slip op. at p. 8.

Judge Mohr also denied class certification of Archer's claims brought under the SBCCA and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA). He reasoned that the SBCCA does not apply to business credit cards or personal credit cards used primarily for business purposes.

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