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Court Denies Fashion Nova Arbitration in Consumer Lawsuit Seeking Public Injunctive Relief

Published on: September 7th, 2023

Judge Elihu M. Berle of Los Angeles Superior Court issued an order yesterday denying Fashion Nova’s bid to send a consumer’s lawsuit for public injunctive relief to arbitration. The lawsuit seeks to hold the fast fashion retail website accountable for its deceptive pricing practices. EDGE filed the class action lawsuit with co-counsel, Capstone Law in May 2023.

As is becoming increasingly common among online retailers, Fashion Nova’s Terms of Service include a mandatory arbitration agreement, intended to prevent consumers from bringing their claims against fast fashion retailer in court. However, as argued in the opposition, Fashion Nova’s arbitration agreement expressly excludes actions for injunctive relief.

The court’s ultimately agreed with the plaintiff’s argument that Fashion Nova’s very own arbitration agreement “prohibits sending this injunctive relief action to arbitration.” Because the consumer’s entire action is for public injunctive relief, it is not subject to mandatory arbitration and must remain in court, she argued.

In denying the motion to compel arbitration, the court rejected Fashion Nova’s argument that the plaintiff “attempted to side-step the parties’ arbitration agreement by temporarily forgoing a prayer for monetary relief in the first iteration of her Complaint” and was engaged in “gamesmanship.” As made clear in the Complaint, the consumer only seeks public injunctive relief, declaratory relief, and an award of fees and costs.

According to Daniel Rozenblatt of EDGE, “our success in overcoming Fashion Nova’s attempt to compel arbitration is a victory for all consumers. Companies should be held to the terms of their own arbitration agreements.”

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