SGT is investigating whether certain Android Apps (i.e. apps available for download on Google Play, Google's "service" that provides content and apps for download) illegally collected and/or maintained the personal information of children that used these apps (the "Kids Apps").
Specifically, SGT believes the following 18 Kids Apps which were available on the Google Play store and accepted into Google's "Designed for Families Program" illegally collected personal information from its child users without parental consent:
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule ("COPPA") makes it illegal for any operator of a web site or online service--which includes mobile apps-- to collect or maintain personal information without parental consent. Under COPPA, an otherwise general audience platform such as Google Play is deemed "directed to children" if the operator of the platform (Google) has "actual knowledge that it is collecting personal information direct from users of another . . . online service directed to children."
SGT believes that, until Spring 2021, several Kids Apps illegally collected personal information about the Kids App users which violates COPPA because the information constituted "personal information", absent parental consent, would violate COPPA. SGT further believes that, beginning at least as early as 2018, Google had actual knowledge that the apps listed above were targeting children. Despite this, Google allowed the data collection performed by these applications to continue unfettered. It was not until Spring 2021, when App developers Viacom and Kiloo settled lawsuits against them alleging COPPA violations, that the tracking stopped.
If you have a child that was under 13 prior to Spring 2021 and played any of the Kids Apps mentioned above on an Android device and are interested discussing your rights, contact a Silver Golub & Teitell LLP attorney today by emailing SGT Associate Attorney Brett Burgs at firstname.lastname@example.org or by filling out the form to the right and submitting your information for us to review.
SGT's class action clients do not pay for services or litigation expenses out-of-pocket. SGT covers all costs and fees associated with the class action litigation and operates on a contingency basis. That is, SGT is only compensated (if at all) after a successful outcome for our clients. In the event of a class-wide settlement or verdict at trial, we apply to the court to be paid a fee out of the recovery. These fees as well as any costs we seek reimbursement for must be approved by a judge.
A class action a type of litigation where a single or small group of individuals represent a larger group (the "class") harmed by the same conduct and/or seeking a similar form of relief in a single proceeding. Proceeding in this way is appropriate where the alleged group harmed, or "putative class" is made up of "similarly situated" individuals. This means that they have suffered similar injuries as a result of the same type of conduct. Class action lawsuits are often used when it would be impractical or impossible for individual plaintiffs to bring their claims individually.
Silver Golub & Teitell LLP often represents similarly situated individuals or investors in cases involving consumer fraud, securities fraud, defective products, data privacy, and environmental contamination. In these cases, the class action provides a mechanism for bringing together a large number of similarly situated individuals in order to hold the wrongdoer accountable and obtain relief for the class as a whole.
In a class action lawsuit, the lead or representative plaintiff is an individual who is chosen to represent the interests of all class members. Selection of a lead plaintiff is usually based on a number of factors, including the strength of their claim and their willingness to be actively involved in the litigation. The lead plaintiff is generally not afforded any special legal status but their role is essential to the success of the class action.
To qualify as a lead or representative plaintiff an individual or investor must generally meet the following criteria: (1) the plaintiff has suffered some injury as a result of the defendant's actions that is typical of the injury suffered by other class members; (2) the plaintiff must be able to represent the interests of the class fairly and adequately; and (3) the plaintiff must not have any interests that are antagonistic to those of the class.
In a consumer case, this typically means an individual must have purchased or used the product or service at issue during the relevant period. In the case of a securities fraud or investment-related class action, this typically means that an investor must have invested in and held the investment through a certain time period.
This is a question only you can answer. People choose to serve as lead plaintiffs for a variety of reasons. Most often, it is because people care about what has happened to them and recognize that if they don't act, there is no guarantee someone else will.
Most successful class actions end in settlement, rather than a verdict at trial. When a settlement is reached (or a verdict decided), all class members are entitled to a proportionate share of the recovery. Often, differences in the amount of recovery between class members will depend on the type of securities, bonds, goods, and/or services an investor or consumer purchased. Most of the time, a claims administrator is hired (and overseen by SGT) to administer the process of getting class members their share of a recovery.
Settlements often provide relief to class members regardless of whether they still have a proof of purchase. In the case of securities actions, selling your shares after the class period ends does not affect your status as a class member. Situations vary, it is worth it to speak to us about your individual circumstances.