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Consumers Reject Marriott’s Challenge To Discovery Order


April 6, 2023

A class of consumers suing Marriott International Inc. in wide-ranging multidistrict litigation over a major data breach says it needs information on how the hotel company calculated the value of the consumers’ personally identifiable information, asking a Maryland federal judge to sign off on a special master’s report ordering discovery into the valuation.

The consumers’ Tuesday letter to the court comes after Marriott objected to a special master’s report recommending certain discovery into the California Consumer Privacy Act statement contained on Marriott’s website. The discovery, the hotel chain said, “goes far beyond the discovery plaintiffs requested and the ‘narrow, focused discovery’ the court permitted.”

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The discovery is part of multidistrict litigation over a data breach uncovered in 2018 in which hackers stole the personal information of hundreds of millions of guests at Marriott-owned Starwood Hotels & Resorts Inc. The data theft unleashed a wave of lawsuits that were consolidated into the MDL in Marriott’s home state of Maryland.

The litigation has been split into three tracks, the third of which is the consumer track involving millions of people. The first, a securities track, was tossed in June 2021, and the second involves the city of Chicago.

U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm in May 2022 certified eight classes of Marriott guests on the consumer track while rejecting a damages model advanced by the plaintiffs on grounds it requires “too much individualized inquiry.”

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The consumer track plaintiffs are represented by James J. Pizzirusso of Hausfeld LLP, Andrew N. Friedman of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC and Amy E. Keller of DiCello Levitt LLC.

Read the complete story on Law360 (subscription required).