Juul lawsuit over advertising vaping products to youth sees 4 classes certified

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Juul MDL Class Certification overview:

  • Who: A federal judge in California certified four classes of consumers in an MDL against Juul Labs Inc.
  • Why: Consumers argue Juul deceived its minor customers with the advertising for its vaping devices.
  • Where: The MDL is being litigated in the California federal court.

A federal judge in California certified four classes of consumers involved in multidistrict litigation arguing Juul Labs Inc. was deceptive in the way it advertised its Juul vaping devices to young people.

Classes include a nationwide Class of adults and a nationwide Class of minors who bought Juul devices, along with a Class of minors and a Class of adults who bought Juul e-cigarette devices in California.

The judge overseeing the MDL ruled claims of unjust enrichment, unfair conduct, fraud, warranty violations, and an organized scheme claim under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act were common amongst the four classes.

Juul had unsuccessfully argued that the customers had not shown that the claims they brought forth were predominant enough among the classes to warrant class action status.

The e-cigarette company argued that the customers were all acting as individuals when purchasing—and continuing to use—Juul vaping devices.

Juul Argues Relevant Facts Related To Alleged Conduct Always ‘Changing’

Juul also argued that any relevant facts related to its alleged conduct are continually changing, such as its marketing campaigns, labeling, and the devices flavors and design.

The judge disagreed with Juul, however, ruling that questions—such as how much the company’s alleged “youth-oriented” marketing played a role in the amount of youth using the product—was subject to the opinion of experts representing each side.

“Resolution of these fact-driven disputed issues raises common predominant issues that will likely be resolved by the trier of fact,” the judge said. “Remaining differences can be addressed by well-recognized case management and trial plan strategies.”

Last July, a federal judge declined toss 18 separate bellwether complaints‘ filed against Juul and its largest investor over claims they misled consumers about the safety of the vaping devices and helped fuel a vaping epidemic amongst young people.

Have you purchased a Juul vaping device? Let us know in the comments!

The plaintiffs are represented by Sarah R. London of Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP, Dena Sharp of Girard Sharp LLP, Dean Kawamoto of Keller Rohrback LLP and Ellen Relkin of Weitz & Luxenberg PC.

The MDL is In re: Juul Labs Inc. Marketing Sales Practices and Products Liability Litigation, Case No. 3:19-md-02913, in the US District Court for the Northern District of California.

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