On December 19, 2008, the Fourth Appellate District of the California Court of Appeal in Party City v. Superior Court (Palmer) No. D053530 held in a published decision that zip codes are not "personal identification information" under the Song-Beverly Act. The Court held that Party City was entitled to summary judgment and granted its writ petition on the following grounds: (1) the plain language of the statute did not include zip codes; (2) related federal regulatory definitions of the meaning and purpose of zip codes showed they are not personal or identifying in nature; and (3) the legislative history and the principal statutory purposes of Song-Beverly did not support an interpretation that a part of an address, which is not by itself private or personal in nature, was meant to be covered by the Act. Since the parties in Party City have settled that action, this decision will probably stand unless and until the issue reaches the California Supreme Court in another one of the many Song-Beverly actions currently pending in the state.
This is an update to our November 10, 2008 blog post entitled, "Reasonable Minds Differ On Whether A Zip Code Is "Personal Identification Information" Under The Song-Beverly Act."