Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Class Action Lawsuit Against Groupon

We're big fans of Groupon. We've recently purchased 5 Groupons to one of our favorite spots in the Sloop, Panozzo's. The gift certificate said that it expires in one year, but it sounds like this expiration date is against Illinois law.

Edelson McGuire, LLC, a law firm in Chicago, has filed a class action lawsuit against Groupon:

Now a North Side man is suing Groupon — the company behind the wildly popular website offering daily deals at everything from eateries to retail outlets — alleging the discounted gift certificates he purchased to a local florist weren’t quite the deal he thought they were.

Specifically, Daniel Keeler purchased three $40 gift certificates, each valued at $80, for Grow Flower Shop in the NBC Tower, but when he attempted to redeem them earlier this year, he was told he’d have to pony up $20 for each of the three arrangements he wanted to send, according to the lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court.

The suit not only alleges breach of contract, but accuses the company of violating Illinois law by offering non-food gift certificates with expiration periods shorter than five years.

One of Groupon's main Chicago competitors, YouSwoop, was also sued, but it appears that they've acted a little quicker to come to a settlement. It will be interesting to see how this turns out for Groupon.

For the law junkies, the Consumer Protection law in Illinois states:
On or after January 1, 2008, no person shall sell a gift certificate that is
subject to: (1) an expiration date earlier than 5 years after the date of
issuance; or (2) a post-purchase fee.

We definitely were not familiar with this law, but glad we know now. We actually had a similar issue with a gift certificate that we tried to use at Savoy Bar & Grill in the Essex Inn (800 S. Michigan Ave). It didn't expire but somehow they wouldn't honor the gift certificate.


Patrick said...

Groupon filed a "class action" against themselves, which is funny. Basically they say if you feel duped email them and they will refund you. No one has a sense of humor anymore. Could the $20 this north side douche was going to pay really worth a lawsuit? I won't be joining "the class".

Groupon Clone said...

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