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Priceline faces class action over alleged false representation of tax charges

By Robbie Hargett | Jan 23, 2016


OKLAHOMA CITY (Legal Newsline) - An Oklahoma man is suing an online travel company over claims it charges "taxes and fees" that do not in fact go to taxing authorities.

Richard Laquer, individually and for all others similarly situated, filed a class action lawsuit Jan. 8 in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma against The Priceline Group, alleging negligence per se, unjust enrichment and false representation.

On June 2, 2015, the suit states, Laquer submitted on priceline.com a "name your own price" offer of $35 to rent an automobile in San Francisco two days later, resulting in a reservation to rent a car from Hertz at the San Francisco International Airport.

The suit alleges the transaction charged Laquer's MasterCard for $54.05, $35 for the daily vehicle rental fee and $19.05 for "taxes and fees," suggesting these charges were owed to various federal, state and local taxing authorities.

However, the suit alleges Priceline does not pay taxing authorities any portion of the "taxes and fees" category it charges for online rentals and purchases.

Laquer and other class members have allegedly suffered damages as a result.

Laquer and others in the class seek actual and consequential damages, punitive damages, disgorgement of all "taxes and fees," injunction, interests, attorney fees and other costs of the suit, together to exceed $5 million. They are represented by attorneys Larry A. Tawwater and Darren M. Tawwater of The Tawwater Law Firm in Oklahoma City.

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma case number 5:16-CV-00015-HE

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