San Francisco Bay Area law firm Gallo LLP has filed the first of what it predicts could be thousands of individual damages cases against Google based on the same misconduct alleged in Matera v. Google, Case No. 15-CV-04062-LHK. Acting for a class of consumers who never signed up for Gmail (but nevertheless had their email scanned by Google), the Matera plaintiffs sought injunctive relief under the federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act (the “Wiretap Act”) and California Invasion of Privacy Act (“CIPA”).
(SAN RAFAEL, Calif.) — NEWS: San Francisco Bay Area law firm Gallo LLP has filed the first of what it predicts could be thousands of individual damages cases against Google based on the same misconduct alleged in Matera v. Google, Case No. 15-CV-04062-LHK. Acting for a class of consumers who never signed up for Gmail (but nevertheless had their email scanned by Google), the Matera plaintiffs sought injunctive relief under the federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act (the “Wiretap Act”) and California Invasion of Privacy Act (“CIPA”). The Matera case was brought by Gallo LLP, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, and Carney, Bates, & Pulliam, PLLC.
On February 9, 2018, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California issued an injunction against Google’s pre-delivery scanning of email for advertising purposes pursuant to a settlement. (See http://www.gmailsettlement.com.) However, the settlement did not release any damages claims non-Gmail users may have.
“Even if you never used Gmail, Google was still scanning all your emails to Gmail users, whether they were to your mother or your doctor, and using the content to create profiles and build advertising data,” explains Senior Partner Ray E. Gallo. “We excluded damages claims from the Matera case because of the court’s ruling in related litigation, which suggested that individual questions of implied consent might preclude certification of a damages class.”
Following court decisions denying Google’s challenges to the legal basis for the Matera lawsuit, Google agreed, and on that basis was court-ordered to stop intercepting and processing inbound emails to Gmail accounts for advertising purposes for three years. Google reports that it has changed its architecture to do that.
“Damage claims remain viable for affected individuals during a short statute of limitations window,” says Gallo. “CIPA protects Californians and requires that both sides consent to the interception of communications between them and authorizes statutory damages of $5,000 per violation. If each intercepted email constitutes a violation, Google could have billions of dollars in liability. Individuals in other states with two-party consent laws have similar claims, and we may accept those claims too.”
Gallo is accepting certain clients who have never signed-up for Gmail accounts through its website at https://emailprivacy.gallo.law to assert their $5,000 claims (or the applicable statutory damages under that plaintiff’s state law).
Gallo LLP pursued a similar strategy in 2016 in Corley v. Google, seeking damages on behalf of about 900 individuals who alleged they never consented to Google’s email processing practices. Court records indicate those cases settled in 2016.
About Gallo LLP:
San Francisco Bay Area law firm Gallo LLP ( https://gallo.law ) represents consumers, employees, and investors in large-scale litigation. Gallo is noted for its industry-leading use of technology in lieu of class treatment. Gallo’s software is now available to other lawyers at https://leverage.law. Client reviews of Ray E. Gallo at AVVO.com suggest clients love the approach.
Ray E. Gallo is a graduate of Yale and the UCLA Law School, has been listed in Los Angeles Magazine as one of LA’s “Rising Stars,” is listed in Martindale Hubbell’s Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers, is a regular “Clients’ Choice” award winner on AVVO, and has been named as a Top 100 national Legal Consultant in Technology by Lawdragon.
Gallo LLP, 1299 4th St., Suite 505, San Rafael, CA 94901.
Related link: https://gallo.law
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