A Conversation with State Attorneys General Webcast | Thursday, October 4, 2:00 PM (ET)
Join Kamala Harris, Attorney General of California, for the next installment of “A Conversation with State Attorneys General,” Dickstein Shapiro’s ongoing webcast series. State AG Practice Partner Milton Marquis will interview AG Harris about her role and priorities as California’s chief legal officer. AG Harris will also answer questions from the audience. Please click here to register for this complimentary program.
New Jersey Attorney General Reaches Settlement with Cancer Charity Accused of Abusing Tax-Exempt Status to Purchase Luxury Cars
- New Jersey Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa announced that a final consent judgment has been filed in New Jersey Superior Court with Tri County Charity Center, Inc., I Buy Cars For You, LLC, and other individuals based on allegations that the defendants used a cancer charity’s tax exempt status to purchase millions of dollars’ worth of luxury cars without paying sales tax.
- The consent judgment resolves a lawsuit alleging that the defendants used false identification to purchase dozens of vehicles on behalf of the cancer charity without paying sales tax, and then exported the vehicles to Europe, Asia, and North America.
- As part of the settlement, the defendants must pay a total of $65,000 to the state, as well as an $18,000 donation to the NYU Langone Medical Center.
New York Attorney General Sues Former Leader of the National Arts Club for Alleged Self-Dealing
- New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman recently announced that his office has filed a lawsuit against the former president of the National Arts Club, Aldon James, for alleged self-dealing and mismanagement that resulted in a loss of $1.75 million to the organization.
- The lawsuit is based on allegations that Aldon James took control of apartments, offices, and other rentable space in the club, which he used with his brother without paying rent, and used the club’s funds for personal shopping trips and meals.
- In total, the Attorney General is seeking to require James to repay the club over $2 million and to prevent him from serving as an officer or director of any New York not-for-profit corporation.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Settles with Telemarketer for $75,000
- Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly announced that a Lehigh County telemarketer, Atlantic Productions, has entered into a settlement agreement with the office to resolve allegations that the company illegally solicited charitable contributions and portrayed themselves as members of fraternal organizations.
- The Attorney General’s office alleged that Atlantic Productions called consumers to solicit charitable contributions without being properly registered, and misled donors into believing that they were firefighters, constables or other public safety officials.
- As part of the settlement, Atlantic Productions must pay $75,000 in restitution, fines, and penalties, and agree to certain prospective conduct provisions, such as recording all solicitation calls.
Maryland Attorney General Settles with Hand Sanitizer Company Over Alleged Deceptive Advertising
- Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler recently announced that his office has reached a settlement with CleanWell Company and OhSo Clean, Inc. to resolve allegations that the company engaged in unfair and deceptive trade practices about its hand sanitizer.
- The Attorney General alleges that the company represented that its hand sanitizer was “proven to kill 99.99% of germs that can make you sick” and was “proven to kill 99.99% of germs including MRSA, Salmonella, Staph, and E. coli,” without adequate substantiation of those claims.
- The settlement agreement requires Cleanwell to pay $100,000 in penalties and costs and requires the company to refrain from making any false, misleading or deceptive representations about its hand sanitizer products.
Ohio Attorney General Sues Internet Layaway Business
- Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine recently announced that his office has filed a lawsuit against an Internet layaway business and its owner based on allegations that the companies failed to deliver products purchased on layaway and failed to provide refunds to consumers.
- The lawsuit alleges that the company violated Ohio’s Consumer Sales Practices Act and Retail Installment Sales Act and seeks restitution for all consumers harmed, as well as injunctive relief, civil penalties, and court costs.
Massachusetts Attorney General Requires Insurance Company to Pay $345,000 in Restitution to Settle Claims
- Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley recently announced that her office has reached a settlement with auto insurance company Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company, which requires the company to pay $345,000 in restitution and $50,000 to the Commonwealth to settle claims that it wrongfully terminated policies.
- The settlement resolves allegations that the company violated Commonwealth Automobile Reinsurers rules by subjecting policyholders with clean driving records to non-renewal.
Inaugural Meeting of Consumer Advisory Board Convenes
- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Consumer Advisory Board held its inaugural meeting today in St. Louis, Missouri.
- The Consumer Advisory Board is comprised of a mix of experts, industry representatives, community leaders, and advocates familiar with consumer protection, consumer financial products or services, community development, fair lending, civil rights, underserved communities, and communities impacted by high-priced mortgage loans. The meetings of the board are open to the public.
States v. Federal Government
Three States Join Lawsuit Challenging to Dodd-Frank
- The Attorneys General of Michigan, Oklahoma, and South Carolina have joined a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the authority of the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury to liquidate large, non-bank financial companies on the brink of failure as part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The states expressed concern about protecting state pension funds.
- The original lawsuit, which was brought by the State National Bank of Big Spring, the 60 Plus Association, and the Competitive Enterprise Institute, challenges as unconstitutional the formation and operation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and President Obama’s recess appointment of Richard Cordray as the director.