Munger Tolles Obtains Dismissal of Retail Optometry Putative Class Action

Munger, Tolles & Olson represented MBNR, Inc., which leases offices located inside Costco warehouses in California to independent doctors of optometry, in obtaining dismissal of a putative class action brought on behalf of patients receiving eye exams at Costco.

On Sept. 27, 2016, U.S. District Court Judge John A. Houston for the Southern District of California granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss, finding that the plaintiffs failed to demonstrate harm. The plaintiffs had claimed unlawful, fraudulent and unfair business practices in violation of California statutes that prohibit profit sharing and other agreements between optometrists and opticians.

The suit sought to represent patients who received eye exams from optometrists who rented office space inside Costco warehouses from MBNR. They alleged that due to provisions in the lease agreements, optometrists were not independent, as required by California law.

The Munger Tolles team included Martin D. Bern and Maximillian L. Feldman.