August 6, 2020 – Disney Destinations Facing Another Class Action Over Annual Pass Charges
Disney Destinations faces at least one additional proposed class action alleging the theme park operator wrongfully charged annual passholders “all at once” in early July 2020 to make up for monthly payments that were suspended while Disney World was closed due to COVID-19.
“The amounts charged to annual passholders far exceed any authority given to Defendant to take an auto-payment,” the 12-page suit, filed August 3 in Florida federal court, alleges. “This caused harm to annual passholders who were wrongly deprived of their assets and was a direct breach of the contract between Defendant and annual passholders.”
The plaintiff claims that although her annual pass expired on April 22, 2020, the defendant around July 3 withdrew without authorization more than $225 from her bank account, the same amount the woman typically would have paid for her annual passes had they not been expired. Though the initial withdrawal was reimbursed to the plaintiff, Disney Destinations again charged the woman the same amount without permission roughly 10 days later, the suit says.
“Defendant’s representative informed [the plaintiff] that Defendant would then reimburse the August unauthorized charges in either late September or early October 2020,” the complaint claims, adding that the plaintiff has since had to engage in a significant back-and-forth with Disney Destinations in an effort to be reimbursed.
The lawsuit, which alleges violations of the federal Electronic Funds Transfer Act, can be found here.
Disney Destinations, LLC has been hit with a proposed class action lawsuit over its apparent decision to charge annual passholders for several months of suspended payments all at once upon Disney World’s reopening in early July.
Disney closed its parks in April 2020 amid the COVID-19 crisis and accordingly suspended monthly auto-payments for annual passes until they could reopen, the 15-page lawsuit says. In the first few days of July, however, the plaintiffs and proposed class members were “shockingly and suddenly” charged for several months’ worth of pass payments all at once, according to the complaint.
The plaintiffs allege the amounts charged by Disney Destinations far exceed any authority given to the company to take auto-payments, and constitute a direct breach of contract between Disney and annual passholders.
Moreover, the lawsuit says Disney’s reopening has caused annual passholders’ previously broad access to be “severely restricted.” Instead of the previously disclosed restrictions, such as blackout dates, annual passholders now have no guaranteed access to the defendant’s parks and must make a reservation in order to use their annual pass, the suit relays. Additionally, annual passholders are now restricted to visiting one park per day, the case reads, noting Disney has conceded that it may be difficult for proposed class members to get a park reservation during its “limited capacity period” in which certain pass benefits and features may be unavailable.
The plaintiffs each allege their debit cards were improperly charged hundreds of dollars in early July 2020 to cover months of annual pass payments, causing significant financial stress and aggravation.
The case proposes to cover Disney annual passholders in Florida, with a separate nationwide class, who were charged amounts beyond what was authorized in their contracts. The suit also proposes to cover those in Florida who were charged for annual passes and were not able to access Disney parks and related services as advertised.
ClassAction.org’s coverage of COVID-19 litigation can be found here and over on our Newswire.