Firm wins significant victory in consumer class action against The Honest Company
December 6, 2016 – In a significant victory for the firm today, Federal District Court Judge John A. Kronstadt ruled almost entirely in the firm’s favor on The Honest Company’s Motion to Dismiss in the firm’s consumer class action against the company. Plaintiffs alleged that Honest deceptively marketed and sold products as "natural" when in fact they contained synthetic, non-natural ingredients, and sold sunscreen as "effective" when it was not effective in preventing sunburns. In his order, Judge Kronstadt ruled that a reasonable consumer would be deceived by Honest’s labeling, as a consumer would read a “natural” label and assume that the product contains no synthetic or non-natural ingredients. Judge Kronstadt also upheld the firm’s breach of warranty claims and claims relating to other mislabeled "natural" products that plaintiffs did not directly purchase. The court also ruled that the Complaint adequately alleged the sunscreen claims. While Honest argued that “effective” is a vague and unspecific term and therefore could not misrepresent the ineffective sunscreen, Judge Kronstadt ruled that the express purpose of sunscreen is sun protection, and therefore a consumer would rely on the sunscreen for protection from the sun. The case, Shane Michaels v. Honest Company, Inc., is led by firm partner Nicholas A. Carlin and is pending in the Central District of California in Los Angeles. The matter’s next hearing before the court is set for March 20, 2017.