Press Releases

Appeals Court Clears Way for Century 21 Class-Action Lawsuit
October 20, 2010

TRENTON, N.J., Oct. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- A class-action lawsuit filed by Century 21 franchisees against Century 21 Real Estate Corp. and parent company Cendant is moving forward following a decision of the New Jersey Appellate Division.

In August, New Jersey Superior Court Judge Robert J. Brennan certified a class of current and former Century 21 franchisees in a lawsuit alleging breach of contract and other claims against their franchisor, Century 21 Real Estate Corp., as well as its parent company, consumer and business services provider Cendant Corp. Currently, Century 21 is owned by Cendant spin-off Realogy Corp.

Following Judge Brennan's ruling, Cendant asked the New Jersey Appellate Division to reconsider the class certification decision. On October 15, 2010, the appellate court announced it would not hear the appeal, which clears the way for the case to go to trial.

"We are pleased that the case will now move forward as originally directed by Judge Brennan," says attorney Dan Drachler of Zwerling, Schachter & Zwerling, who represents the franchisees along with firm co-founder Robert S. Schachter.

"As a result of Cendant's actions, Century 21 franchisees have suffered damages that may total in the hundreds of millions of dollars," says Mr. Schachter.

According to the lawsuit, Cendant failed to provide the level of services to Century 21 franchisees required by their agreements. Additionally, the lawsuit claims that contributions to a national advertising fund, which topped more than $40 million annually, were misappropriated and diverted to uses other than the benefit of Century 21, including the promotion of Century 21's Cendant-owned real estate competitors. Shortly after the purchase of Century 21, Cendant also acquired Coldwell Banker and ERA.

Judge Brennan's order certified a class of current and former Century 21 franchisees during the period from August 1995 to April 2002 whose franchise agreements contain a New Jersey jurisdiction clause.

The franchisee plaintiffs also are represented by New Jersey-based Keefe Bartels LLC and the Fort Lauderdale, Fla., office of Adorno & Yoss.

Zwerling, Schachter & Zwerling, LLP, represents clients nationwide in financial-related class-action lawsuits. With offices in New York City; Garden City, N.Y.; and Seattle, the firm currently plays a leading role in numerous major securities and complex commercial litigations pending in federal and state courts. To learn more, please visit the firm's website at http://www.zsz.com.

For more information, on the class-action lawsuit involving Century 21 franchisees, please contact Mark Annick at 800-559-4534 or mark@androvett.com.