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Dollar General's legal fight with consumers continues over aloe gel product

By Charmaine Little | Dec 12, 2017

]CHICAGO (Legal Newsline) – Dollar General (DG) continues its battle with two consumers who are suing the company over fraud allegations related to aloe gel.

The legal woes for DG began when two women, Thera Lambert and Amy Connor, accused the company of consumer fraud with claims that its product DG Body Soothing Aloe Gel didn’t actually have aloe in it.

The defendant has opposed the court permitting the plaintiffs to file an amended complaint using the Consumer Fraud Act, according to an Aug. 10 filing with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois Eastern Division. 

It stated that the new allegations are useless as they don’t fall into any categories of the Consumer Fraud Act (Illinois Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act): “(A) deceptive labeling of the gel with respect to its aloe content; (B) misbranding under the IFDCA; (C) ‘wide-spread’ sales allegations; and (D) alleged harm to competitors.”

DG also stated the plaintiffs’ hope to restore the prayer for injunctive relief was also pointless.

Considering this, DG wanted the court to dismiss the plaintiffs’ request to file a second amended complaint.

This comes after the court granted DG’s motion for dismissal of the case in part based on a June 16 opinion. The court agreed with DG when it came to Count II, to the breach of implied warranty of merchantability accusation. It used the notion that “there is no plausible claim that the gel failed its ordinary and intended purposes,” the opinion stated.

The court also sided with DG on Count III, Violation of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act (ICFA). Under the IFCA, a plaintiff has to claim “a deceptive or unfair act or practice by the defendant; (2) the defendant’s intent that the plaintiff rely on the deceptive or unfair practice; (3) that the unfair or deceptive practice occurred during a court of conduct involving trade or commerce; and (4) that the plaintiff suffered actual damages proximately caused by deception," the opinion stated.

The court pointed out that this claim was the same as the breach of express warranty claim, Count I, which the court ruled in favor of the DG as the factor for the plaintiffs purchasing the gel was not valid.

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Eastern Division of the Northern District of Illinois