Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has defeated an attempt by Yelp, an online referral platform, to avoid penalties for publishing untruthful information designed to deceive Texans.
In September 2023, Attorney General Paxton filed a lawsuit against Yelp for violating Texas’s Deceptive Trade Practices Act by adding inaccurate and misleading language to the app’s listings of pregnancy resource centers that provide assistance to pregnant mothers. Yelp attached warnings to some listings, deceptively disparaging facilities that counsel pregnant women instead of providing abortions. Yelp’s CEO even boasted in a press release that he would use his company to encourage abortion and provide special assistance to groups attempting to subvert Texas’s pro-life laws.
After receiving pre-suit notice and in response to the Attorney General’s efforts, Yelp filed a preemptive lawsuit against Attorney General Paxton and sought a preliminary injunction to halt the State’s actions. Yesterday, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California denied Yelp’s motion and dismissed their suit entirely. Texas will continue its effort to hold the company accountable for its violations of Texas law.
“Yelp cannot mislead and deceive the public simply because the company disagrees with our state’s laws,” said Attorney General Paxton. “I’m pleased that the court agreed with Texas that Yelp’s federal lawsuit was a frivolous attempt to avoid enforcement for misleading consumers.”
To read the order, click here.