In an opinion issued yesterday, Judge Stein certified two classes of plaintiffs – a national class and a New York class – bringing fraud claims against internet dating web site It’s Just Lunch (“IJL”). The class representatives claim to have been defrauded into paying $1,000 for a year-long membership to IJL based on “corporate‐mandated misrepresentations repeated by individual IJL employees.” Judge Stein explained:
In short, virtually all evidence in the record indicates that during the period at issue, IJL staff relied on a uniform script to inform prospective customers during initial interviews that IJL already had at least two matches in mind for those customers’ first dates regardless of whether or not that was true. The proposed national class’s fraud claims will substantially rise or fall based on whether that “multiple match” representation was materially misleading. Moreover, plaintiffs have demonstrated that they can attempt to prove their fraud claims through common evidence, including that IJL structured its sales pitch to collect payment from customers immediately after making the “multiple match” representation. Because plaintiffs have demonstrated that Rule 23(a) and (b)(3) are satisfied, the Court certifies a national class with regard to plaintiffs’ fraud claims.
Judge Stein also certified a New York class for both fraud and unjust enrichment claims, while denying certification of a national class for unjust enrichment claims.