Back in October, I reported on an opinion in which the Ninth Circuit determined that the defendant had violated the CLRA and directed that summary judgment be entered in the plaintiff's favor on the CLRA claim. Gonzales v. CarMax Auto Superstores, LLC, 840 F.3d 644 (9th Cir. 2016).
Thereafter, the plaintiff invoked the CLRA's attorneys' fees provision by moving for fees incurred on appeal. In response, the defendant argued that fees could not be awarded because it offered to correct the violation after receiving the plaintiff's CLRA notice letter, in accordance with Civil Code section 1782. The Ninth Circuit disagreed, observing that the plaintiff's complaint sought injunctive relief only, and not damages:
In the present case, Gonzales’ Second Amended Complaint did “not seek damages of any kind” on his CLRA claim, but rather sought only an “injunction prohibiting acts or practices which violate the CLRA.” As the California Supreme Court noted, “section 1782, subdivision (d) contemplates the filing of a CLRA action for injunctive relief alone, and such actions are not subject to the requirements of subdivisions (a) and (b) of notice and allowance for voluntary correction,” which apply only to an action for damages. Meyer v. Sprint Spectrum L.P., 200 P.3d 295, 301 (Cal. 2009). Because Gonzales sought only injunctive relief for violation of the CLRA, CarMax’s correction offer does not bar Gonzales from recovering attorney’s fees.
Gonzales v. CarMax Auto Superstores, LLC, ___ F.3d ___ (9th Cir. Jan. 6, 2017), slip op. at 6 (footnotes omitted). The panel remanded the case to the district court for it to rule in the first instance on the other questions raised by the fee motion.