Businessman signing contractThe United States and much of the world are still in the worst of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses and schools remain closed and the daily death rate remains high. Notwithstanding, plaintiffs’ attorneys have begun rapidly filing class actions for alleged breach of contract when business services were impacted due to COVID-19. For example, multiple cases have been filed against airlines for refund claims arising out of flight cancellations; against ticket sellers and marketplaces for refunds following cancelled events; against gyms and fitness facilities for the charging of monthly membership fees while facilities are closed; and against universities and other facilities providing room and board.

In these cases, plaintiffs may attempt to portray companies as shifting losses to consumers, exacerbating the financial hardship of the COVID-19 pandemic. The plaintiffs also may ignore the steps certain defendants have taken to make customers whole or minimize any inconvenience or loss resulting from a situation that largely is out of defendants’ control. Defendants will want to navigate these cases carefully from a public relations standpoint.

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