Posted in Legal Bites
Los Angeles County Sues Grubhub for Unfair Business Practices and False Advertising

On February 21, 2024, Los Angeles County filed a complaint for injunctive relief and damages against Grubhub alleging that the company engaged in false and deceptive advertising and unfair business practices that harm consumers, delivery drivers, and restaurants. The lawsuit was filed by the office of County Counsel. The County’s press release announcing the lawsuit states that it was filed “in response to complaints from consumers and restaurant owners.”

The unlawful business practices alleged in the complaint include:

  • Bait-and-switch delivery pricing, in which ...
Posted in Legal Bites
FTC Sues to Stop $24.6 Billion Kroger-Albertsons Deal

On February 26, 2024, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued an administrative complaint and authorized a lawsuit in federal court to block Kroger Company’s proposed $24.6 billion acquisition of the Albertsons Companies, Inc. The acquisition would be the largest supermarket merger in United States history.

The complaint was made pursuant to the agency’s authority under the FTC Act, and alleges that the proposed acquisition is anticompetitive. Nine attorneys general joined the FTC in filing the complaint.

The FTC’s complaint alleges that the ...

When Does a “Dispute” Arise Under the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Act?

In 2022, Congress enacted the “Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Act” (the “Act”) which provides that, at the election of the person alleging conduct constituting a sexual harassment dispute or sexual assault dispute, “no predispute arbitration agreement or predispute joint-action waiver shall be valid or enforceable with respect to a case which is filed under Federal, Tribal, or State law and relates to the sexual assault dispute or the sexual harassment dispute.”  (9 U.S.C. § 402).       

The California Court of Appeals recently ...

California Court of Appeals Reinforces Strict Limits on Arbitration Fee Payment Deadline

The California Court of Appeals recently revisited the issue of the draconian deadline for paying arbitration fees established by California Code of Civil Procedure section 1281.97.  In Suarez v. Superior Court of San Diego County, the new twist that prompted appellate court review was that the 30-day grace period to pay the arbitration fees ended on January 1, 2023.  Because January 1, 2023 was a holiday, the employer argued that the arbitration payment deadline was extended by statute under Code of Civil Procedure sections 12 and 1010.6.

More specifically, and among several ...

Trial Courts Do Not Have Authority to Dismiss PAGA Claims for Lack of Manageability

Until recently, California courts were split on whether Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) claims could be dismissed for a lack of “manageability” – referring to the practicality of effectively conducting a trial on the issues.  Like class actions, PAGA actions generally purport to represent a significant number of an employer’s current and former employees.  However, there are important distinctions between class and PAGA actions, which caused California’s appellate courts to issue conflicting opinions on how PAGA cases should be adjudicated.  The ...

Happy Valentine’s Day! A Reminder that Employers Must Notify Employees of Void Non-Compete Clauses and Agreements by February 14, 2024

As part of a focused effort by the California Legislature to protect employees from unenforceable non-compete clauses and agreements and increase fair competition among employers in 2024, Assembly Bill 1076 enacted Business and Professions Code section 16600.1.

In addition to any other Valentine’s Day plans that employers may have, all employers that provided any agreement with an unlawful non-compete clause or otherwise executed an unlawful non-compete agreement with its employees who were employed after January 1, 2022 must provide written notice to each employee or ...

Posted in Legal Bites
FDA Identifies Priority Guidance Topics for Foods Program

On January 25, 2024, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) announced a new website listing regulations that its Foods Program plans to publish by October 2024 and longer-term regulations it is prioritizing for publication at a later date.

FDA also updated the list of guidance topics that it is considering and expects to publish by the end of 2024. The following five topics have been added to the list of guidance documents the FDA expects to publish by the end of December 2024:

  • Notifying FDA of a Permanent Discontinuance in the Manufacture or an Interruption of the Manufacture ...
Courts surprisingly affirm insurance coverage to defend against economic loss

For parties facing class action lawsuits, where the class seeks to recover for economic losses, there may still be opportunities for insurance coverage. Thus, where economic losses arise out of the purchase of products that have the potential for causing bodily injury, insurance coverage, at least for purposes of the duty to defend, may well be available.

Two fairly recent cases take up this scenario and both affirm coverage, at least for purposes of the duty to defend. Coverage was affirmed even though the relief sought in the class action complaints was solely for damages occasioned ...

Stand Up and Be Counted! Employee Count Guidance for Statutes Without Express Guidelines

Many California state statutes are applied based on the number of persons employed by an employer employee count.  Unfortunately, there are a number of these laws, including statutes establishing employee leaves of absence requirements, that do not specify which employees must be counted to determine if the law applies to a particular employer.  A recent state guidance regarding the 2023 state pay transparency statute, which requires the inclusion of a pay scale in job postings by employers with at least 15 employees, but which law does not specify who must be included in the count ...

California Enacts Higher Minimum Wage for Health Care Workers

Commencing on June 1, 2024, Senate Bill 525 will raise the minimum wage for covered health care workers at covered health care facilities in California. A “covered health care facility” as further defined by various statutes, is:  a facility or other work site that is part of an integrated health care delivery system; a licensed general acute care hospital; a licensed acute psychiatric hospital; a special hospital; a licensed skilled nursing facility, if owned, operated, or controlled by a hospital or integrated health care delivery system; a patient’s home when health care ...

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