A proposed class action lawsuit accuses Chegg, Inc. of unlawfully subscribing consumers to paid programs and later charging them without authorization when the subscription auto-renews.
According to the 16-page lawsuit, the education technology company—which provides textbook rentals, online tutoring and other student services—violated state and federal law by enrolling consumers in automatic renewal subscriptions without plainly stating their terms or providing easy ways to cancel and subsequently charging consumers without their consent.
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By law, Chegg must plainly provide consumers with the terms of a program or subscription that automatically renews, including a description of the cancellation policy, the length between renewal periods and the recurring charges that will be made to the subscriber’s credit or debit card, the complaint explains.
Rather than clearly presenting its automatic renewal offer terms “clearly and conspicuously” as required, however, Chegg’s disclosures are in “deliberately” tiny and hard-to-read print, the filing charges.
Per the lawsuit, the defendant also fails to adequately disclose descriptions of its offers’ cancellation policies, that recurring fees will be charged to subscribers’ credit or debit cards and when the consumers will be assessed those fees.
Chegg has a history of “unlawful” and “unfair” practices regarding its automatic renewal services, the suit claims, relaying that the Better Business Bureau’s website displays “hundreds of complaints about Chegg’s subscription practices.”
The plaintiff, a California resident, bought an eTextbook from Chegg.com for $19.99 in late August 2022, the suit relays. After her purchase, the defendant enrolled the woman in a subscription that automatically renewed in mid-October, charging her credit card another $19.99 fee as part of a “Study Pack” without her authorization, the case claims.
The complaint contends that the plaintiff would not have bought the eTextbook from Chegg at all if she had known the company was going to sign her up for an automatic renewal service and later charge her credit card without consent when the subscription renewed.
The lawsuit looks to represent anyone in the United States who paid for a product or service from Chegg as part of an automatic renewal or continuous service offer since December 27, 2018.
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