A consumer has filed a putative class action alleging the $1 surcharge that P.F. Chang’s imposes on its gluten-free menu items violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by discriminating against those with celiac disease. Phillips v. P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, No. 15-344 (U.S. Dist. Ct., N.D. Cal., removed to federal court January 23, 2015).
The complaint asserts that P.F. Chang’s maintains a separate gluten-free menu that charges $1 more than seemingly identical items on its regular menu and that it does not add a similar surcharge for other dietary accommodations. The plaintiff alleges that the surcharges lack justification because they “do not reflect additional costs of ingredients” and some of the items “are the same as the non-gluten free options or contain fewer ingredients” or are “naturally gluten free.” The plaintiff seeks certification of a California class and violations of the state’s Unruh Act, Disabled Persons Act and Unfair Competition Law.