SANTA CLARA — Shell has been ordered to honor its discount card service after false advertising failed to provide service for its customers. According to the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, Equilon Enterprises, LLC, that had offered gift and fuel reward cards as Shell Oil, was found to be fraudulently advertising lower gas prices to customers who used their sponsored card.
Equilon Enterprises reportedly failed to adequately inform customers about limitations in its gift and fuel rewards cards.
The case stems from incidents where customers tried to redeem discount cards from stations. According to the District Attorney’s Office, “some stations refused to redeem cards with less than $10, as required by state law.”
The Santa Clara County District Attorney Office with Alameda, Monterey, Napa, Santa Cruz, Solano, and Sonoma counties filed the suit on behalf of customers defrauded by Equilon Enterprises, LLC.
Deputy District Attorney Tiyen Lin said, “The District Attorney’s Office is committed to ensuring that California’s consumer protection laws are followed, both to protect consumers and to create a level playing field for all businesses.”
Shell has been ordered to implement new technology at stations to address technical limitations that prevented advertised discounts from being combined.
They have also been ordered to disclose any limitations on advertised discounts by providing training materials to help Shell stations address related issues. They are also have been told to notify consumers on how to call with questions or complaints about Shell gift cards or fuel rewards cards.
A settlement of $762,500 has been scheduled to help resolve consumer protection and advertising violations related to false sales.