Each week, Crowell & Moring’s State Attorneys General team highlights significant actions that State AGs have taken. Here are this week’s updates.


  • In the first week of April, the state attorneys general gathered for a meeting of the Attorney General Alliance (ANA). The alliance discussed ANA chair and Nevada Attorney General Ford’s initiative on consumer protection education. The discussion covered consumer protection topics such as finance, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence. The meeting also included a fireside chat between Attorney General Ford and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Rohit Chopra regarding collaboration between the agency and state attorneys general.
  • A multistate coalition of 11 attorneys general filed a multistate action against Mariner Finance for widespread violations of various state consumer protection laws. The suit alleges that Mariner Finance charged consumers for hidden add-on products that consumers did not agree to purchase, potentially totaling over $121.7 million in nationwide premiums and fee add-ons (excluding all interest Mariner Finance received for these add-ons). The complaint alleges that Mariner Finance either materially misrepresents or intentionally excludes information about the add-ons, which are deployed through aggressive sales tactics designed to force consumers to refinance in a predatory debt cycle. This lawsuit was originally filed in August 2022 by Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia, New Jersey, Oregon, and Washington, but recently, Wisconsin, North Carolina, New York, Illinois, Indiana and Tennessee moved to intervene. The lawsuit seeks full restitution, repayment of any unlawful profits, civil penalties, rescission of all current contracts and injunctive relief.
  • A bipartisan coalition of 18 state attorneys general and U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced the Airline Passenger Protection Partnership which has the goal of investigating airlines and ticket agents and holding them accountable when they violate aviation consumer protection laws. The Partnership expands the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) oversight capacity by establishing a new fast-track system prioritizing misconduct cases brought by State AGs that allege unfair or deceptive airline practices.
  • A coalition of 19 state attorneys general announced that they filed a Motion for Leave to Intervene as Respondents in the State of Iowa v. Securities and Exchange Commission to defend the SEC’s recently adopted Final Rule regarding corporate climate disclosures. The case was brought by Republican attorneys general and industry entities challenging the regulations. The coalition asserts that the states have a substantial interest in defending the Final Rule, which provides the States, their residents, and other investors with information about climate-related risks that is critical to making informed investment decisions.


  • Illinois Attorney General Raoul recently presented a proposed budget for the Illinois Attorney General’s Office for the 2025 fiscal year to the Illinois legislature. We found this noteworthy because it highlights the sheer scale of some states’ consumer protection efforts. The Illinois Attorney General’s Office generated more than $1 billion in revenue for Illinois in 2023, so for each taxpayer dollar received, the office generated $17.55 for the state. The Illinois Attorney General’s Office responded to over 19,000 consumer complaints in 2023 and returned $145 million to consumers through direct restitution efforts.
  • Illinois Attorney General Raoul charged Mr. Eric Zabalza of Chicago with thirteen counts of theft and three counts of home repair fraud for allegedly scamming Cook County residents for more than $20,000 of uncompleted work. Mr. Zabalza is the owner of Sierra Fencing Inc., a fence construction and installation company. 
  • Illinois Attorney General Raoul announced that he filed a lawsuit against MV Realty PBC, LLC and MV Realty, LLC as well as corporate managers Amanda Zachman, Antony Mitchell and David Manchester, for allegedly tricking financially strapped consumers into confusing and convoluted 40-year real estate brokerage contracts in violation of the state’s Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act and the Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act. More specifically, MV Realty allegedly induced consumers to enter into 40-year contracts that obscured the defendants’ actual business model, which is based on extracting so-called “early termination fees” from unwitting consumers if they attempt to sell or otherwise transfer their homes. These “early termination fees” can cost tens of thousands of dollars. The contract also provides for the filing of a “memorandum” against consumers’ homes that restricts their ability to sell or refinance for decades. Attorney General Raoul is seeking restitution for the consumers, civil penalties of up to $50,000 per violation, and the State’s costs and expenses.


  • Massachusetts Attorney General Andrea Joy Campbell issued an advisory providing guidance to developers, suppliers, and users of AI regarding their obligations under state consumer protection, anti-discrimination, and data security laws. The advisory clarifies that existing state consumer protection, anti-discrimination, and data security laws apply to emerging technology, including AI systems, just as they would in any other context.     


  • Maryland Attorney General Brown announced a settlement with Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. d/b/a Royal Caribbean International to resolve an investigation into the Capital Jazz SuperCruises. The cruises were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the tickets were sold by Capital Jazz, Inc., that company is not a part of the settlement and Royal Caribbean has agreed to pay amounts owed to consumers who have not received refunds at this time. The settlement includes a $1.3 million restitution payment to consumers, as well as a $100,000 payment to the state.

New Hampshire

  • New Hampshire Attorney General Formella filed a civil complaint in a County Superior Court against NEC Construction 603 LLC, CRV Construction & Tiny Homes LLC, Utopia Construction & Designs, as well as Christopher & Caitlin Vittum for violations of the New Hampshire Consumer Protection Act. The complaint alleges the defendants violated the state consumer protection law by making material misrepresentations, collecting and spending advance payments without intent to complete construction projects and failing to respond to consumer inquiries. Attorney General Formella is seeking restitution for the consumers, civil penalties of $10,000 per violation, and the State’s costs and expenses.


  • Washington Attorney General Ferguson issued a statement after a County Superior Court judge ruled that Washington’s ban on the sale of high-capacity gun magazines is unconstitutional. Attorney General Ferguson filed a lawsuit against Gator’s Custom Guns last September arguing the retailer intentionally violated the Consumer Protection Act when it continued selling high-capacity magazines after the state law banning such activity went into effect. Attorney General Ferguson plans to file an emergency motion to Washington’s Supreme Court seeking a stay.
  • Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced that District Court Judge Ricardo S. Martinez granted AG Ferguson’s partial summary judgment against Allure Esthetic, a plastic surgery provider in Seattle, and its owner, Dr. Javad Sajan, for allegedly falsely and illegally inflating its ratings on online platforms including Yelp and Google. According to the complaint, Allure and Dr. Sajan violated the Consumer Review Fairness Act and Washington’s Consumer Protection Act for allegedly requiring more than 10,000 patients to sign illegal non-disclosure agreements that forced patients to contact the business directly if they had any concerns rather than posting a “negative review.” The agreement stated that Allure considered anything under four stars a “negative review,” and required patients to “not say anything” that would “hurt the reputation” of the provider. Under this “pre-service” non-disclosure agreement, Allure required patients to agree to “pay monetary damages to the practice for any losses” if they failed to remove a negative review. Some patients were also required to waive health privacy rights, to “allow a response [to the review] from the practice with my personal health information” if they post a negative review. Attorney General Ferguson is seeking injunctive relief, restitution for consumers, civil penalties of up to $7,500 per violation, and the State’s costs and expenses.