Price-gouging lawsuit against Las Vegas resorts has been dismissed

KTNV Las Vegas
Price-gouging lawsuit against Las Vegas resorts has been dismissed
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LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A proposed class action lawsuit accusing Las Vegas casinos and hotel operators of price-gouging has been dismissed.

The lawsuit was originally filed in January 2023 by residents from Florida and Washington state, who are being represented by the Hagens Berman law firm.

According to the original complaint, resorts, including MGM, Caesars, Treasure Island, and the Wynn, were accused of using a program called Rainmaker to use "real-time pricing and supply information" to help them maximize profits "in violation of antitrust laws." Back in January, Simon Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman, told Channel 13 their antitrust attorneys uncovered an "unlawful agreement in which Rainmaker collects and shares data between Vegas hotel competitors to unlawfully raise prices."

At the time, a spokesperson for MGM Resorts International told Channel 13 the claims were "factually inaccurate" and "meritless." MGM Resorts filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit in April.

On Tuesday, Chief U.S. District Judge Miranda Du ruled in favor of the casinos and for the case to be dismissed.

In a 13-page ruling, Du said there are "numerous deficiencies" in the complaint and it "does not answer the basic questions: who did what, to whom (or with whom) and when?"

Several issues she raised were the complaint didn't "plausibly allege" the casinos entered into any illegal agreements and must contain "factual allegations". However, she states the complaint does not.

For example, Du stated there was no proof the hotel operators all used the same revenue management software or were forced to accept room rates and prices that were recommended to them. She also stated the complaint alleged hotel operators entered into an agreement. However, it was not specific about exactly who was involved and needed to be narrowed down.

Du also stated that the plaintiffs also told the court "they do not know when the purported conspiracy began" and did not name when hotel operators began using the Rainmaker program.

Du said the plaintiffs could file an amended lawsuit within 30 days. Berman did tell the court he has received some discovery from the defendants since the case was originally filed. He said he does plan to file an amended complaint and "are confident we can address the court's concerns."