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New Jersey Courts Differ on ZIP Code Collection

PRIVACY LAW—U.S.

October 19, 2011

In September, two New Jersey courts made opposite rulings on whether retailers can collect ZIP codes as a condition of using a credit card, reports the Hunton & Williams Privacy and Information Security Law Blog. On September 16, a New Jersey Superior Court judge denied Harmon Stores' motion to dismiss a class-action suit claiming the store's policy on collecting ZIP codes violates the Truth-in-Consumer Contract, Warranty and Notice Act (TCCWNA). Ten days later, a U.S. District Court judge dismissed a case against Williams-Sonoma alleging the same violations, saying that a credit card transaction does not constitute a "written consumer contract" under TCCWNA, and, even if it did, a ZIP code "does not constitute a contract provision that violates an individual's rights." Editor's Note: Read about the California Supreme Court's decision in a similar case against Williams Sonoma in the story "California Supreme Court rules that ZIP codes are personal identification information" from the March edition of the IAPP's Privacy Advisor newsletter. Member login will be required.
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