UPDATE: After CABIA’s team posted this Special Report, we followed up with a billboard in Bakersfield that encouraged viewers to learn more “about the Bakersfield biz helping trial lawyers get rich.” Apparently that business–Local Clicks Pro–wasn’t keen on this type of publicity. This weekend, the Class Action Plaintiff Finder website was scrubbed of any reference to Local Clicks Pro; now it’s listed as a solo project of Matt Lopez at the Sacramento Internet Marketing Agency. The internet doesn’t forget, and a cached version of the web page still lists McCall and Lopez as the founders of Class Action Plaintiff Finder. Potential clients can also still reach McCall via Donald@ClassActionPlaintiffFinder.com.
CABIA has written extensively about the trial lawyers getting rich from the Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA). On our website, users can browse background information about their firms and review the thousands of PAGA cases they’ve been involved in.
But these lawyers don’t act alone: There’s a lucrative network of consultants who assist in finding PAGA plaintiffs. We call them PAGA Profiteers. Perhaps the most brazen pair of profiteers is Don McCall and Matt Lopez, who operate a business called Class Action Plaintiff Finder.
By day, McCall operates the internet marketing company Local Clicks Pro in Bakersfield, and Lopez operates the Sacramento Internet Marketing Agency in Fair Oaks. McCall boasts of his “amazing client success record,”and says on Facebook he wants to “help people discover local businesses.” Lopez says he has “successfully been helping business owners grow their business through the right mix of online advertising, marketing products and services since 1996.”
It’s unlikely that Lopez’s and McCall’s business owner clients are aware of their extracurricular activities boosting the client rolls of trial lawyers.
And boost them they have.
Lopez and McCall boast of finding “tens of thousands of PAGA Plaintiffs for Lawyers and Law Firms since 2013” through “hundreds of online marketing campaigns.” The pair says its victim list include companies such as “BlackBerry, Puritans Pride, Amazon, Western Union, Walmart, Hertz Rental Car, Blu E-Cigarettes, CarMax, Sysco Foods, US Foods, Pepsi, Tesla, Lowes, Home Depot, UPS, Halliburton, Whole Foods”–and presumably numerous independent business owners across the state. (Here’s a list of some of the duo’s plaintiff-targeted websites.) They’re also sponsors of the California Employment Lawyers Association — the trade group for the trial lawyers.
This business model is particularly shameful given that Lopez and McCall operate in communities hard hit by PAGA lawsuits. Take McCall’s shop, which is located in Bakersfield in Kern County. One 2016 story documents how PAGA complaints were “killing Kern County businesses,” with multi-million-dollar lawsuits filed over frivolous complaints such as non-inclusive dates on paystubs. The impact for the community has been devastating: “[PAGA] lawsuits have cost jobs or forced the business to permanently close. Others have filed bankruptcy, laid off workers or even taken their businesses and jobs…to Texas.”
Lopez and McCall apparently have a two-faced approach to business–proclaiming a love of the state’s businesses, while helping the lawyers who are bringing them down. Consider one of Lopez’s client testimonials, from the Sacramento Region Community Foundation: “Sacramento Internet Marketing will always be our first choice for digital marketing,” the client raved. Yet the Foundation’s treasurer also serves as the Chief Financial Officer for River City Bank, whose chairman is a second-generation member of the Family Business Association (FBA). FBA has written frequently and passionately about how PAGA is crushing the state’s family-owned businesses, and must be reformed.
How many other clients of Lopez and McCall have been negatively impacted, either directly or indirectly, through the work they’ve done for the trial lawyers? We can’t answer that question definitely. But if their clients want to learn more, there’s no need for us to exaggerate — after all, Lopez and McCall are excellent copy writers (emphasis added):
Over the years, word has gotten out amongst the Law Profession throughout the US that we offer the best, affordable and quickest solutions for finding Plaintiffs for any type of investigation or case. We would love to help you find your next Plaintiffs!