Automatic renewal terms and cancellation policy nowhere to be seen, says plaintiff
What to Expect?
Gift boxes for expecting moms are quite popular, and a number of services are available online that send one-off packages or even regularly scheduled mailings to moms-to-be. Mommy Mailbox, The Ecocentric Mom and the slightly sinister-sounding Box Me Mommy are just a few such services revealed by a cursory internet search.
For a somewhat modest fee − often between $20 and $40 per gift − the newly expectant mother will receive a grab bag of gifts, including pregnancy-related beauty supplies, relaxation aids and inspirational keepsakes. Subscriptions are available − some services offer packages through the first, second or third trimester; others continue delivering packages into the first months of the baby’s life.
One of these services, Bump Boxes, Inc., drew the ire of customer Kathy Lira, who filed a class action complaint in California’s Central District against the company in March 2018. According to receipts included in her complaint, Lira purchased a “monthly pregnancy subscription” from the company. And those same receipts furnished the material for her lawsuit.
The complaint levels several charges against Bump Boxes under the California Business and Professional Code. Lira claims that the company failed to provide clear and conspicuous disclosure of its automatic renewal policy and charged her for a continuing subscription without obtaining her affirmative consent. Moreover, she accused Bump Boxes of failing to provide an acknowledgment including the automatic renewal terms and the cancellation policy. According to Lira, these activities violated California’s automatic renewal statute and unfair competition law.