In this appeal, the court affirmed the trial court's denial of class certification to three plaintiffs who asserted claims under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) of 2003, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681 to 1681x, which prohibits retailers who accept credit or debit cards from printing more than the last five digits of the card number or expiration date upon any receipt. The complaint was dismissed as to all three plaintiffs for lack of personal jurisdiction over defendants.
Plaintiff Ellen Baskin is a New Jersey resident who made a purchase at one of defendants' New Jersey stores and plaintiffs Kathleen O'Shea and Sandeep Trisal are New York residents who made purchases at defendants' New York stores.
The court agreed with the trial court that plaintiffs failed to establish that class action was warranted under Rule 4:32-1(b)(3). Specifically, plaintiffs only alleged technical violations of FACTA, and they did not assert they were victims of identity theft, fraud, or other harm. The court determined that individual actions in the small claims section would be a superior means to adjudicate claims of technical violations of FACTA. Thus, the superiority and predominance requirements of Rule 4:32-1(b)(2) were not met.
The court held that the New Jersey courts do not have general jurisdiction over defendants or specific jurisdiction to entertain the claims of the New York plaintiffs. However, the court determined that the trial court erred in dismissing Baskin's complaint because she is a New Jersey resident with an alleged FACTA claim emanating from a transaction at one of defendants' New Jersey stores. Therefore, the court reversed dismissal of Baskin's claims and reinstated the complaint as to her individual claims only.