A federal court in Minnesota has dismissed with prejudice the remaining claims in a putative class action that sought to recover damages for allegedly misleading advertisements promoting hunting clothing. Buetow v. A.L.S. Enters., Inc., No. 07-3970 (RHK/JJK) (U.S. Dist. Ct., D. Minn., decided August 17, 2012). Information about the Eighth Circuit’s order vacating an injunction barring the manufacturers from claiming that their products are made with “odor eliminating technology” appears in the August 25, 2011, issue of this Report.
According to the court, the plaintiffs could not show that their claims would benefit the public, a prerequisite for a private cause of action filed under the Minnesota Private Attorney General statute. Because injunctive relief was no longer possible in the case and the plaintiffs were left with claims for nominal damages, the court concluded that “whatever public benefit may have existed when this case was first filed, no longer exists. While this action once sought injunctive relief altering the nature of Defendants’ advertisements, such claims are no more, having been dismissed by the Eighth Circuit. Plaintiffs’ attempts at class certification also have failed.” The court further indicated that it would likely have dismissed the claims as not actionable given the Eighth Circuit’s strong suggestion that the advertisements were “nonactionable puffery.”