A California woman has brought a proposed class action on behalf of her child alleging defendant Adobe Systems, Inc. misrepresents voidable purchases, i.e. subscriptions, to its Creative Cloud Platform (ACCP) bought by minor children as final and nonrefundable in violation of both state and federal law. Expanding on this, the plaintiff further claims Adobe routinely refuses to allow minors to back out of agreements between the company and said minors for use of the Creative Cloud Platform suite of online content development and distribution tools even though Adobe “knew that minors were making such purchases and that minors had the right to disaffirm such contracts if they choose.”
“Adobe, in an unfair and deceptive method, charged [the plaintiff] and the class an exorbitant cancellation fee after the minors attempted to disaffirm their contracts,” the case claims.
The complaint argues the ACCP is merely a computing platform that does not constitute a physical product. Thus, the plaintiff claims, there is no “product” to return in the event of a cancellation or lapse in an agreement with Adobe. In such an instance, access to ACCP is simply restricted, the case mentions.
Adobe “specifically and intentionally” allows minors to sign up for the ACCP, the lawsuit claims, citing a section in its terms of services that requires users to be over 13 years old. That same section notes parental consent is not needed for a minor to enter into the contract. Under California law, however, “a contract of a minor may be disaffirmed by the minor before majority or within a reasonable time afterwards,” the lawsuit reads.
The “auto-renewal” aspect of Adobe’s contracts is a point of contention in the case. The complaint alleges the minor plaintiff’s contract with Adobe mentions nothing about automatic renewal, yet the individual’s account was automatically re-upped, for which the plaintiff was charged automatically, once the first year of service came to a close. According to the case, this is where the problem began.
“Declaring all sales to be final, Adobe routinely refuses requests by children and their parents and legal guardians to provide refunds for transactions that are subject to disaffirmance under California law, and unlawfully retains the benefit of purchases by minors,” the lawsuit says.