Proposed Class Claims Filed Against Kombucha Tea-Maker
On March 6, 2018, proposed class claims were filed against Brew Dr. Kombucha LLC in Illinois state court alleging that the healthy beverage company intentionally misled consumers with its false advertising scheme.
The suit was filed by named plaintiff Vladislav Bazer. Bazer alleges that the defendant claims its bottles of kombucha contain a significantly higher concentration of probiotic bacteria than is actually found in the beverage. In the complaint, Bazer argues that consumers generally purchase a specific brand of kombucha based on the probiotic content as stated on the product label. In the context of kombucha, probiotics refer to helpful bacteria found within the digestive system, which assist in regulating various bodily functions. Probiotics are measured in colony forming units (“CFUs”).
On March 5, 2018, named plaintiff Ketrina Gordon petitioned a California federal court to certify a California class of consumers who all similarly allege that candy-manufacturing giant, Tootsie Roll Industries Inc., has been under-filling boxes of its popular candies, Junior Mints and Sugar Babies.
On February 23, 2018, an $8.5 million settlement was submitted to California federal court judge Jesus G. Bernal by a class of exotic dancers who claimed that their former employer, the Spearmint Rhino nightclub chain, violated the Fair Labor Standards Act.
On February 23, 2018, California federal court judge Anthony Battaglia rejected Kellogg Company’s motion to dismiss a punitive class action suit alleging that the company’s hugely popular Pringles-brand salt-and-vinegar flavor chips are deceptively marketed as naturally flavored when in reality the chips are mostly artificially flavored.
On February 23, 2018, a proposed class action suit was filed in Texas federal court against private prison company CoreCivic Inc., alleging that the company violated basic human rights and the US Constitution when it forced immigrant detainees into forced labor.
A $5 million proposed class action suit was filed against food manufacturer MJS America LLC, alleging that the company engaged in false advertising with the marketing of its popular “Ancient Grain Twists” snack food.
On February 20, 2018, self-described “Modern Nature” hair care manufacturer Monat was hit with a proposed class action suit claiming that the company’s products cause hair loss and irritation.
Named plaintiffs Trisha Whitmire and Emily Yanes de Flores filed the suit in Florida federal court.
On February 13, 2018, a visually impaired plaintiff filed a putative class action in Illinois federal court against fast-food giant McDonald’s alleging that the company is in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) during its drive-thru-only hours.
Chocolate giant Nestlé USA Inc. (Nestlé) is facing a proposed class action in Massachusetts federal court which alleges that Nestlé failed to disclose to consumers that much of its chocolate products are made from chocolate sourced from areas of West Africa where forced child labor is prevalent.
Popular cosmetics retailer Ulta Beauty is facing prospective class claims in Illinois federal court after a complaint was filed by a California customer of the cosmetics-retailer who alleged that the company was instructing its stores to repackage and reshelf returned products alongside new products.
Women’s rights and equality continue to take a central role in the media as many continue to come forward and share their stories. However, the majority of the narrative surrounding such empowering movements as #MeToo and #TimesUp has been made up of negative stories of male chauvinism and times when women felt powerless. While such stories are necessary to make change and bring a sense of awareness to an ongoing problem it is just as important to bring forth empowering stories of female victories to renew in ourselves a sense of how truly far women have come and how strong our voices can be.
On February 6, 2018, a $975,000 settlement was submitted to U.S. District Court Judge for the Southern District of New York, Alison J. Nathan, for preliminary approval by a class of current and former servers of famed New York City eatery Serendipity 3.
On February 5, 2018, plaintiffs in the Stericycle Inc. employee wage dispute class action asked U.S. District Judge John Kronstadt to grant preliminary approval for a $2 million settlement agreement.
The suit was originally filed by named plaintiff, Sergio Gutierrez, in Los Angeles Superior Court in 2014. Plaintiff argued that the defendant medical waste disposal company denied its employees proper breaks, rounded payroll time thus cheating employees out of wages for time spent working and failed to compensate employees for time spent changing into their company-required uniform.
On February 5, 2018, Chiquita Brand International (“Chiquita”) announced that it had reached a confidential settlement agreement with plaintiffs in three cases consolidated into the larger multidistrict litigation (“MDL”) that claims Chiquita supported Columbian terror group Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Columbia in the 1990s. The terror group was responsible for the kidnapping and murder of six Americans, whose families are the plaintiffs in the lawsuit.
On January 29, 2018, a three-judge panel in California appeals court reversed a lower court ruling and reinstated the Tinder Inc. age discrimination class action.