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Google LLC

CASE CAPTION             In re Rene Cabrera, et al., v. Google LLC
COURT United States District Court for the Northern District of California - San Jose Division
CASE NUMBER 11-cv-01263
JUDGE Honorable Edward J. Davila
PLAINTIFFS Rene Cabrera and RM Cabrera Company, Inc. (“RMC”)

This long-running, nationwide consumer fraud class action arises out of a scheme in which Google bilked advertisers using its online “AdWords” platform in two ways. First, Plaintiffs allege that Google misrepresented that it would only charge advertisers for clicks on ads placed within geographical locations of the advertisers’ choosing. In actuality, Google covertly charged advertisers for ads displayed outside of their explicitly designated locations. Plaintiffs and the class assert that Google’s misconduct violated California’s Unfair Competition Law which prohibits unlawful, unfair, and fraudulent business practices. Second, Plaintiffs allege that Google breached its agreement with advertisers and systematically overcharged them by failing to apply its “Smart Pricing” algorithm which, as Google warranted, is designed to automatically discount the price that advertisers pay based on the likelihood that a particular click will convert to business. Plaintiffs allege that Google inflated the cost of “Search Bundled Clicks” by applying an arbitrary 6% “boost” to the Smart Pricing measurements from June 1, 2009 to December 13, 2012. 

After twelve years of litigation, on August 15, 2023, The Honorable Edward J. Davila of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California issued a 69-page opinion certifying two classes of online advertisers and denying Google’s motion for summary judgment. The Court appointed Plaintiffs Rene Cabrera and RM Cabrera Company, Inc. as class representatives, and Kessler Topaz as class counsel. The case will now proceed to trial.

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