Class Actions Blog

Student loan class action filed

Posted on: April 27th, 2017 by Steve Larson

On April 13, 2017, students unhappy with the way their student loans were being handled filed a class action lawsuit in Pennsylvania federal court against payment processing company Higher One Holdings Inc. and bank entities WEX Bank and Customers Bancorp.

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Surgery gown manufacturer hit with $454 million jury verdict

Posted on: April 25th, 2017 by Steve Larson

Kimberly-Clark Corp. and its spinoff Halyard Health Inc. were hit with a $454 million jury verdict, which included $350 million in punitive damages in a class action alleging that their surgery gowns were passed off as essentially impermeable, but were actually very porous. Although the punitive damages amount may be reduced, because it exceeds the compensatory damages by almost a hundredfold, it demonstrates the jury’s anger sparked by evidence taken from internal company documents showing the company was aware of issues regarding the quality of the gowns’ seams and testing failures.

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Class action certified against British Airways for fuel surcharge on frequent fliers

Posted on: April 18th, 2017 by Steve Larson

After five years of legal battles, a class action was certified on behalf of over 170,000 disgruntled British Airways frequent fliers in New York federal court on March 31, 2017. The class action alleges that the fuel charge is arbitrary, and is not in accord with the Frequent Fliers contract. British Airways charges frequent fliers fuel surcharges when using rewards points to pay for flights. The charge can sometimes be up to $500.

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Minor League Baseball players get class action certified

Posted on: April 13th, 2017 by Steve Larson

Just in time for the start of the 2017 baseball season, a federal judge in California has certified a class action on behalf of thousands of disgruntled Minor League Baseball players who allege that they should be paid minimum wage and overtime. The players are from different “clubs” across the state of California. They have worked countless hours throughout both the official season and the off-season, participating in conditioning and training in addition to playing official games. Minor League Baseball is part of a player feeder system for Major League Baseball and it has long been thought that minor league players are “paying their dues” in expending the long hours for comparably bad pay.

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BBC World News connects passenger being dragged off of United Airlines plane to unequal bargaining power between consumers and corporations in America as a result of forced arbitration clauses

Posted on: April 12th, 2017 by Steve Larson

On the April 11, 2017, BBC World News Program, the announcer told a reporter for the Atlantic that traditionally in the United States, if a group of consumers were being treated unfairly by a large corporation, it might result in a lawsuit. The announcer questioned why that was not the case here. The reporter for the Atlantic said that class actions have been vitally important in the past in the United States at leveling the playing field when consumers have disputes with large corporations. The reporter noted that an individual consumer would never have the financial wherewithal to get into a legal dispute with a company the size of United Airlines over an individual claim, but if the claim was on behalf of a number of consumers, that would give the consumers more leverage.

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Class action alleges that Uber charges consumers for longer route than it pays drivers

Posted on: April 11th, 2017 by Steve Larson

A proposed class action filed in California federal court alleges that Uber’s upfront pricing model charges passengers a higher fare based on a longer route, but requires drivers to take the shortest route, allowing Uber to pocket the difference. The plaintiff alleges that Uber instituted the new “upfront” pricing model sometime between June and September 2016. The upfront pricing model gives prospective riders using the Uber app a fare estimate based on a longer than intended route. Upon conclusion of the ride, the Uber defendants collect the upfront rate from the user based on the longer route and time calculations but do not transmit the full fare collected to the drivers (minus the per transport service fee to which the Uber defendants are entitled).

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The information contained in this blog does not constitute legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. We make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to this blog.

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This blog is intended to provide information to the general public and to practitioners about developments that may impact Oregon class actions.

About the author

  • Steve Larson

  • Steve Larson
  • Steve Larson has been representing investors, consumers and employees in class actions in Oregon for over 20 years. He is a shareholder at the law firm of Stoll Berne in Portland, Oregon.
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