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France

Author: Duncan Fairgrieve and Alexandre Biard

VII. Case law

A. Table

Year

Case Name

Court

Subject

2014

Association UFC Que Choisir v. Foncia

Nanterre High Court of First Instance

Housing

2014

Association Confédération Syndicale des Familles (SLC-CSF) v. Paris Habitat-OPH

Paris High Court of First Instance

Housing

2014

Association Confédération Nationale du Logement (CNL) v. Immobilière 3F

Paris High Court of First Instance

Housing

2014

Association CLCV v. Axa and AGIPI

Nanterre High Court of First Instance

Financial investment

2014

UFC-Que Choisir v Free

Paris High Court of First Instance

Consumer

2015

Association Familles Rurales v. SFR

Paris High Court of First Instance

Consumer

2015

CLCV v. BMW Motorrad France

Versailles High Court of First Instance

Consumer

2015

Familles Rurales v. Manoir de Ker an Poul

Vannes High Court of First Instance

Tourism

2016

UFC-Que Choisir v. BNP Paribas

Paris High Court of First Instance

Financial investment

2016

CLCV v. BNP Paribas Personal Finance (PFF)

Paris High Court of First Instance

Financial investment

2017

APESAC v. Sanofi

Paris High Court of First Instance

Consumer, Health

2017

CGT v Safran Aircraft Engine

Not applicable yet-Still in its pre-mediation phase

Employment

2017

Sud-rail v SNCF

Not applicable yet

Employment

2018

Quadrature du net v GAFAM

Not applicable yet

Data protection

2018

AALGA Bretagne v Linky

Not applicable yet

Consumer

2018

UFC- Que Choisir v Natixis Asset Management

Not applicable yet

Consumer

B. Summaries

1. Association UFC Que Choisir v. Foncia (October 2014)

The claim was rejected as inadmissible by the Nanterre High Court of First Instance in May 2018.

2. Association Confédération Syndicale des Familles(SLC-CSF) v. Paris Habitat-OPH (October 2014)

In May 2015, the parties reached a settlement agreement, and Paris Habitat agreed to pay 2 Million Euros to compensate 100,000 tenants.

3. Association Confédération Nationale du Logement (CNL) v. Immobilière 3F(November 2014)

On January 27th, 2016, the Tribunal de Grande Instance of Paris dismissed the claim, pointing out CNL's failure to provide adequate proof of the lack of reimbursement. The Tribunal also did not recognize the unfair nature of the clause. An appeal has been lodged by the association (CNL). On appeal, the Court of Appeal declared that the claim was inadmissible on the grounds that a rental agreement was not a contract for services and did not fall within the scope of the class action legislation. The Cour de cassation upheld this in a decision of 19 June 2019.

4. Association CLCV v. AXA and AGIPI(October 2014)

In November 2016, the defendants challenged a decision of juge de la mise en état before the Court of Appeal of Versailles. The juge de la mise en état had rejected defendants' arguments against the model cases brought by the plaintiff association. The reason for the rejection is the incompetence of the juge de la mise en état to review the admissibility of the action since the definition of the group membership is a substantive issue, and not a procedural problem. The Court of Appeal confirmed the decision in November 2016. In June 2018, the Cour de Cassation confirmed the decision of the Court of Appeal.

5. UFC-Que Choisir v Free(2014)

Subscribers had complained about the quality of the 3G network between 2012 and 2015. This action was settled by an agreement concluded on 31 May 2017. Free mobile will compensate subscribers of Free subscribing to a subscription between 2012 and 2015. For each month of inconvenience that the subscriber will have reported, compensation will amount to EUR1 up to a maximum of EUR12.

6. Association Familles Rurales v. SFR(May 2015)

In October 2018, Paris High Court of First Instance rejected the alleged legal breach on the basis of the restrictions mentioned in the advertisement, as well as the contractual breach on the basis of the technical complexity and reports of ARCEP.

7. CLCV v. BMW Motorrad France(December 2015)

The decision on the admissibility of this claim is currently pending.

8. Familles Rurales v. Manoir de Ker an Poul(August 2015)

In December 2016, the claim was recognized admissible. The decision of the merits is currently pending.

9. UFC-Que Choisir v. BNP Paribas(July 2016)

The Association failed to establish the misleading nature of the contents of the commercial brochure. The judges noted that the front page of the commercial brochure revokes "a possibility of tripling the invested capital". Thus, the alleged breach by BNP Paribas is limited to the misleading nature of the impact of management fees on capital. However, the judges indicated the inexistence of a current and certain compensable financial loss resulting from the allocation of the management fees on the guaranteed capital that the subscribers having been reimbursed during 2013.

In December 2017, the group action was declared admissible but the Tribunal de Grande Instance of Paris dismissed the claim on the merits. It is not known if an appeal would be in progress.

10. CLCV v. BNP Paribas Personal Finance(BNP PPF) (November 2016)

The juge de la mise en état decided to stay the proceedings of all the requests made by the parties to the group action, pending a final decision on the criminal proceedings.

11. APESAC v. Sanofi (May 2017; Jurisdiction: Bobigny High Court of First Instance)

A drug developed by Sanofi allegedly caused malformations to the new-borns of drug users. The action of APESAC is declared inadmissible for lack of locus standi.

12. CGT v Safran Aircraft Engine(May 2017)

Safran allegedly discriminated employees in terms of their union activities. The decision on the admissibility of this claim is currently pending.

13. Sud-rail v SNCF

The French state rail company allegedly discriminated handicapped employees in terms of their career and remuneration development. The decision on the admissibility of this claim is currently pending.

14. Quadrature du net v GAFAM

The association Quadrature du net (which defends the rights and freedom of citizens on the internet) is considering a class action against leading tech companies (that is, Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft) in September 2018. This depends on the outcome of prior complaints which are to be filed before the C.N.I.L (the French data protection authority) on 25 May 2018.

15. AALGA Bretagne v Linky

Linky installed electricity meters that were allegedly harmful to the users. This claim was dismissed by the Court of Rennes on 31 May 2018.

16. UFC- Que Choisir v Natixis Asset Management

Natixis Asset Management allegedly committed various breaches concerning management fees charged to structured funds. This action is still at the constitution stage.

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