In the Central District of California on Wednesday, Maria Thrasher filed a complaint against GrubHub for violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) for purportedly sending the plaintiff unsolicited text messages.
The complaint explained that the TCPA “prohibits any call using an [automatic telephone dialing system (ATDS)] to a cellular phone without prior express consent by the person being called or an emergency purpose.” Under the statute, an ATDS is “equipment having the capacity (A) to store or produce telephone numbers to be called, using a random or sequential number generator; and (B) to dial such numbers.” The plaintiff added that the Federal Communications Commission “has clarified that text messages qualify as ‘calls’ under the TCPA.”
According to the complaint, GrubHub sent the plaintiff text messages using an ATDS. The plaintiff claimed that the text messages that she received “were template-based,” thus they “were impersonal to Plaintiff.” Specifically, the plaintiff alleged that the text messages “consisted of a notification that a restaurant was preparing Plaintiff’s order, an estimated delivery time, and a link to Defendant’s app.” Meanwhile, other texts purportedly gave delivery time updates or informed the defendant that her order was left outside of her door.
However, Thrasher contended that she did not order anything from GrubHub or from any restaurant. Furthermore, the plaintiff asserted that she did not provide GrubHub with her number nor express consent. Additionally, the plaintiff claimed that she “has no business relationship with Defendant and never requested by an agreement or otherwise that she be contacted.”
In an effort to stop receiving messages, Thrasher stated she contacted GrubHub numerous times to inform the defendant “that she was receiving text messages in error and directed Defendant to cease all communications to her Number.” The plaintiff added that she also replied “STOP” to GrubHub’s text messages, but GrubHub continues to send her messages.
For GrubHub’s alleged TCPA violations, the plaintiff has sought statutory damages of $500 for each call that violates the TCPA, as well as treble damages for willful or knowing violations. The plaintiff is represented by Lemberg Law LLC.