In a significant decision for retailers, Judge Manish Shah of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois recently denied in part Defendant Estée Lauder’s motion to dismiss proposed class action claims that its consumer “try-on” technology violated the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (“BIPA”). The Court rejected Defendant’s personal jurisdiction argument, as well as claims that its website terms and conditions required Plaintiff to arbitrate her dispute, and that Plaintiff lacked standing to sue on behalf individuals that used websites Plaintiff herself did not visit. In a decision entitled Kukovec v. The Estée Lauder Companies, Inc., Case No. 22-CV-1988 (N.D. Ill.), the Court determined, however, that Plaintiff did not sufficiently plead that the cosmetics giant intentionally or recklessly violated consumers’ biometric privacy rights, and thereby dismissed those claims. The ruling in Kukovec illustrates the ongoing legal risks for retailers in using “try-on” tech to enhance customer service.
By Ashley Barton
Consumer mislabeling class actions are no novelty in the California food industry, thanks to the state’s trio of consumer protection laws. Plaintiffs have their choice between California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act (Cal. Civ. Code §§1750, et seq.), False Advertising Law (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code §§17500, et seq.), and Unfair Competition Law (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code §§17200, et seq.) when alleging that similarly situated buyers are misled by false advertising on a product’s label. The number of these suits specifically pertaining to flavoring of food and beverage products has risen dramatically in the last several years. Continue reading “Vanilla is the New Flavor of Food Mislabeling Class Actions”