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Friday, April 10, 2020

San Diego rental car fee at center of class action lawsuit

Federal Court

By Sarah Downey | Feb 19, 2020

Shutterstock 161744171
San Diego

SAN DIEGO (Legal Newsline) - A class action lawsuit filed in federal court alleges several rental car companies have improperly charged customers a fee, claiming it was required by the Port of San Diego.

The litigation, which was filed Jan. 24 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California on behalf of a New Mexico resident and others similarly situated, states, “Defendants improperly and illegally assess each car rental a $3.50 fee which is not authorized by law, purportedly claiming that they are required to assess this fee by the Port of San Diego. Defendants knew when they began imposing this fee that it was illegal and improper.”

Included in the allegations is that the $3.50 fee, “is not a legal ‘user fee’ but rather an illegal special tax that has been imposed in violation of Propositions 13 and 218, which require that any special tax be approved by two-thirds of the voters. Because the tax was not approved by local voters, it is an unconstitutional tax and thus unlawful and invalid.”

The suit, which seeks a jury trial, was filed by Los Angeles attorney Helen I. Zeldes.

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Port of San Diego