Sept. 23, 2013 -- A California man is suing Gogo LLC in the hope of leading a class-action lawsuit against the company for allegedly misleading consumers about recurring charges for its in-flight Internet service.
Kerry Welsh, 54, of Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., bought in-flight Internet service from Gogo on Aug. 7, 2011 for $39.95 for up to 30 days on any airline, the lawsuit states. But he claims that after 30 days ended on Sept. 7, he was charged $39.95 every month until at least Dec. 2012, even though he did not use the service, the lawsuit states.
Welsh claims he "received no communications from Gogo on a monthly basis notifying him of the recurring charges," according to the lawsuit filed last week in U.S. District Court in the Central District of California. Welsh is president of WelCom Products, which produces folding hand trucks.
Gogo, which has over 600 employees and is based in Itasca, Ill., provides in-flight Internet and wireless in-cabin digital entertainment services. A spokesman for Gogo declined to comment, citing the pending litigation.
Michael Reese, attorney for Welsh, said he believes this matter is important "to vindicate consumer rights."
Reese, of Reese Richman LLP, said that Welsh is trying to recover on behalf of the class members the money charged to those who "were misled to believe they were purchasing only a one-month pass, but were in fact charged every month thereafter."
The lawsuit states that "every other class member purchased in-flight Internet serve from Gogo prior to Dec. 31, 2012, using a registration website that had representations about the monthly cost of the service but had no representations about the recurring nature of charges for the service."
Gogo's website now states that the charge for monthly service will be recurring, "but it did not do so in 2011," the lawsuit states.
The company's website now states that it charges $49.95 per month or $14 for an all-day pass.
Gogo says it offers services on nearly 2,000 Gogo equipped commercial aircraft. Its in-flight connectivity partners include American Airlines, Air Canada, AirTran Airways, Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways and Virgin America.