Company Running Jdate and Christian Mingle Settles Consumer Protection Action

A popular online dating site entered into a legal settlement with several counties in California because some users were automatically renewed for the service and denied refunds. 

San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties along with the city of Santa Monica settled a consumer protection action Monday with Spark Networks USA, LLC.

The Los Angeles-based company, which runs dating websites like Jdate and Christian Mingle, was automatically renewing users without telling them.

Under federal and state law, consumers must be notified if a subscription is renewed. 

Users must get a clear notification of the renewal and signal their acceptance with a check-box or similar form, according to the settlement.

The company will pay $500,000 in civil penalties and nearly $1 million in restitution. The penalties will be distributed among the municipalities. 

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