HERTZ CORP: Bid for Judgment on Pleadings in "Moretti" Denied

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Class Action Reporter
May 04, 2017

Judge Leonard P. Stark of the United States District Court for the District of Delaware denied Defendant's motion for judgment on the pleadings in the case captioned, ENRICO MORETTI, individually and on behalf of the general public and those similarly situated, Plaintiff, v. THE HERTZ CORPORATION; DOLLAR THRIFTY AUTOMOTIVE GROUP, INC.; and HOTWIRE, INC. Defendants, Case No. 14-469-LPS (D. Del.).

On May 23, 2013, Plaintiff Enrico Moretti filed a putative class action complaint in California state court. Plaintiff sues under California's false advertising, consumer protection, and unfair and deceptive trade practices laws, and alleges common law fraud. Plaintiff accuses Defendants of carrying out a "currency exchange rate scam." According to Plaintiff, prices for car rentals in Mexico were advertised in U.S. dollars but later converted into Mexican Pesos at an artificially inflated rate.

Plaintiff claims that The Hertz Corporation and Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. (Hertz Defendants) supplied this misleading information about car rental prices and terms to Hotwire, Inc. and Hotwire incorporated the content into listings on its website. Plaintiff alleges that Hotwire continued to do so despite consumer complaints and Hotwire's knowledge of the information's fraudulent content.

The matter was removed to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and later transferred to the District of Delaware.

On May 13, 2016, Hotwire filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings. Hotwire contends that it is immune from suit under 47 U.S.C. Section 230, which protects websites and other interactive computer service providers under certain circumstances.

In his Memorandum Opinion dated March 17, 2017 available at https://is.gd/HfdwUI from Leagle.com, Judge Stark held that the judgment on the pleadings is inappropriate because Hotwire has not "clearly established that no material issue of fact remains to be resolved."

Enrico Moretti is represented by Brian E. Farnan, Esq. -- bfarnan@farnanlaw.com -- FARNAN LLP -- Adam J. Gutride, Esq. -- adam@gutridesafier.com -- Marie A. McCrary, Esq. -- marie@gutridesafier.com -- Seth A. Safier, Esq. -- seth@gutridesafier.com -- GUTRIDE SAFIER LLP -- Matthew T. McCrary, Esq. -- matthew_scoble@fd.org -- MCDERMOTT WILL & EMERY

The Hertz Corporation, et al. are represented by Raymond J. DiCamillo, Esq. -- dicamillo@rlf.com -- and -- Susan Marie Hannigan, Esq. -- hannigan@rlf.com -- RICHARDS, LAYTON & FINGER, PA -- John F. Ward, Jr., Esq. -- jward@jenner.com -- and -- Ross B. Bricker, Esq. -- rbricker@jenner.com -- JENNER & BLOCK LLP

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