Court Certifies TCPA Class Action and Subjects Defendant to Aggregate Liability After Discounting Contrary Authority

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Despite a readily available forum for individual suits and the disproportionate and the potentially ruinous liability a TCPA class action presents, a New Jersey District Court nonetheless deemed a class action the superior mechanism for resolving a TCPA suit In A & L Indus., Inc. v. P. Cipollini, Inc., No. 12-7598, 2013 WL 5503303, at *5 (D.N.J. Oct. 2, 2013).  The defendant then sought reconsideration, which the District Court recently denied.

The lawsuit arose from a fax advertisement that a marketing company sent to more than 4,000 recipients on behalf of defendant Cipollini, Inc., a roofing company.  Id. at *1.  Neither Cipollini nor the marketer had obtained prior express consent from these recipients.  One of them, plaintiff A & L Industries, Inc., brought a class action alleging violations of the TCPA and other claims.  Id.

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TCPA Class Certification Denied — Necessity of Individualized Consent Inquiries Doom Certification of TCPA Class Actions

Once again, a defendant has defeated a TCPA class certification motion on the ground that the liability inquiry would require individualized inquiries into class members’ consent to receive calls, precluding a finding of predominance.

In Connelly v. Hilton Grand Vacations Co., LLC, — F.R.D. —-, Case No. 12CV599 JLS (MDD), 2013 WL 5835414 (S.D. Cal. Oct. 29, 2013), plaintiffs sued a resort properties operator alleging that its third party marketer violated the TCPA by using an ATDS to make telemarketing calls to cell phones without obtaining prior express consent.  Id. at *1.  Plaintiffs sought to certify a sprawling class of all recipients of any of 37 million calls to 6 million different numbers over a four-year period, and sought statutory damages for this would-be class “that could total between $18 and $54 billion.”  Id. at *1.

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