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AARP Foundation Legal Advocacy

Docket: Consumer and Utilities


Case Name: Ciser v. Nestle

Court: U.S. Ct. App. 3d Cir.  Docket: 13-4509

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: The judgment of the district court dismissing plaintiff's claims for failure to plead a cognizable claim was affirmed because the third circuit found, not action to recover voluntarily paid but allegedly unreasonable late fees exists at common law, and actions to challenge unconscionable conduct under the N.J. Consumer Fraud Act must allege an element of deceptive conduct. Because the late fees were disclosed in Nestle's contract, they may not be challenged as an unconscionable practice.

Case Name: Sykes v. Mel Harris

Court: U.S. Ct. App. 2d Cir.   Docket: 13-2742, 13-2747, 13-2748 (con)

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: Class certification was affirmed in lawsuit challenging abusive debt collection practices by a debt buyer, a law firm, and the process servicers used by the law firm that often failed to serve the debtors but falsified court records to make it appear that debtors received notice.

Case Name: Battisti v. Tax Claims Bureau of Beaver County

Court: PA Commonwealth Ct. Docket: 733 CD 2014

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: Because the tax authority failed to inform the homeowner, who had paid more than 25 percent of her outstanding taxes that she has a legal right to enter into a payment agreement for the remaining unpaid taxes, the sale of her home violated due process and Pennsylvania law.

Case Name: Torres v. SGE Management

Court: U.S. Ct. App. 5th Cir.   Docket: 14-20128

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: Class certification was reversed where divided panel found that the class members were required to prove reliance, and they could not show that the class members relied on the legality of the scheme because there are many reason why a person becomes involved in a pyramid scheme.

Case Name: Citizens of State of Florida v. Florida Pub. Serv. Comm'n

Court: Fla. Supreme Court  Docket: SC130144

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: Due process does not require the state utility commission to concult its staff when it accepts a settlement and commission is not prohibited from approving costs not included in the original rate making petition.

Case Name: POM Wonderful v. Coca-Cola

Court: U.S. Supreme Court    Docket: 12-761

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: Competitors can challenge allegedly misleading labeling of another's product because the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act does not preclude a private law suit under the Lanham Act.

Case Name: Townsend v. Midland Funding

Court: Md. Ct. of Appeals   Docket: 24-C-13-001033

Read Summary and AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF) 

Case Result: In small claims court, no rules of evidence or even a competent witness is necessary for a debt buyer to obtain a judgment in a contested trial.

Case Name: Company Doe v. Public Citizen

Court: U.S. Ct. App. 4th Cir.  Docket: 12-2209

Read Summary AARP's Amicus Brief (PDF)

Case Result: Court proceedings may not be held in secret, therefore district court must unseal entire record in company's anonymous challenge to public disclosure of a consumer complaint made about a product to the CPSC.

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Legal Cases

Find cases in which AFL has advocated in courts nationwide for the rights of older persons, and filed AARP’s amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) briefs that help courts decide precedent-setting cases. The cases within the drop-down categories below are in alphabetical order for ease of searching.

Strengthening Law and Policy through
Legal Advocacy

Our legal advocacy initiatives  - conducted by AARP Foundation Litigation (AFL) - reflect nearly 20 years of work in federal and state courts across the country. Through our efforts, we support the Foundation’s four impact areas: Tackling Senior Hunger, Paving the Way to Stable Income, assuring the adequacy and availability of Safe and Afffordable Housing and Reconnecting People to Families and Communities, and ensure that those 50 and older have a voice in the laws and policies that affect their daily lives.