DIRECTV, LLC v. E and E Enterprises Global, Inc.

Filing 13

ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFFS APPLICATION FOR A TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER by Judge Dean D. Pregerson: For the foregoing reasons, the court GRANTS Plaintiffs application for a TRO. In addition, a Preliminary Injunction Hearing is set for Friday, September 1, 2017 at 1:00 p.m., unless the parties agree on another date and so advise the court. (see order for further details)granting 5 APPLICATION for TRO (yl)

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O 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 11 CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 12 13 14 DIRECTV, LLC, A CALIFORNIA LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY, 15 16 17 18 19 Plaintiff, v. E&E ENTERPRISES GLOBAL, INC., Defendant. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Case No. 17-06110 DDP (PLAx) ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S APPLICATION FOR A TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER [Dkt. 5] 20 21 This matter comes before the court on Plaintiff DIRECTV’s application for a 22 temporary restraining order (“TRO”). After reviewing and considering the materials 23 submitted by Plaintiff, the court GRANTS the application. 24 25 I. BACKGROUND On August 17, 2017, Plaintiff filed a complaint alleging four causes of action, 26 including breach of written contract, conversion, tortious interference with prospective 27 economic relations, and unfair competition, against Defendant E&E Enterprises Global, 28 Inc. (“E&E”) in connection with E&E’s agreement to promote and sell DIRECTV 1 2 3 4 5 programming and services, to collect the charges for DIRECTV programing and services, and to remit those charges to DIRECTV. Also on August 17, 2017, Plaintiff filed an application for a Temporary Restraining Order (“TRO”), seeking an order that E&E hand over all contractually-required customer contact information and immediately notify all accounts previously serviced by E&E that E&E is no longer a DIRECTV dealer or billing 6 agent. 7 II. LEGAL STANDARD 8 The Supreme Court set forth the standard for assessing a motion for 9 preliminary injunction in Winter v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 129 S. Ct. 365, 10 376 (2008). “Under Winter, plaintiffs seeking a preliminary injunction must establish that 11 (1) they are likely to succeed on the merits; (2) they are likely to suffer irreparable harm 12 in the absence of preliminary relief; (3) the balance of equities tips in their favor; and (4) a 13 preliminary injunction is in the public interest.” Sierra Forest Legacy v. Rey, 577 F.3d 1015, 14 1021 (9th Cir. 2009). 15 III. DISCUSSION Having reviewed Plaintiff’s pleadings and without the benefit of an opposition 16 17 from Defendant, the court concludes that Plaintiff has made a showing of likelihood of 18 success on the merits and that the balance of hardships weighs in favor of issuing the 19 TRO. 20 Plaintiff asserts that Defendant E&E entered into several written agreements to 21 promote and sell DIRECTV programming and services as a commissioned sales 22 representative for DIRECTV, and to provide billing and collection services for DIRECTV 23 programming and services. These written agreements provide inter alia that, upon 24 termination of the agreements between DIRECTV and E&E, E&E is to (1) direct all 25 customer inquiries regarding DIRECTV programming and services to DIRECTV, and (2) 26 within 10 days of any request by DIRECTV, to send written notices to DIRECTV 27 customers informing them of the transfer of billing from E&E to DIRECTV (Decl. 28 McCree, Ex. B). The agreements further provide that, upon termination, DIRECTV will 2 1 2 3 4 5 process all future billing and collection activities, and that E&E and DIRECTV will work together to transition billing and collection activities. (Decl. McCree, Ex. C). Plaintiff maintains that E&E has not performed any of these actions, despite the termination of the agreements. Plaintiff has therefore shown a likelihood of success on the merits of its contract 6 claims. Moreover, E&E has alleged loss of goodwill arising from the premature 7 termination of customer accounts, and the risk that money damages will be inadequate 8 because E&E is at significant risk of insolvency. Therefore, the absence of a TRO would 9 likely cause Plaintiff immediate, irreparable harm. Moreover, it does not appear that 10 Defendant will suffer any great injury should a TRO issue that directs it to comply with 11 its contractual obligations. Further, the court concludes that a TRO would benefit the 12 public interest in maintaining the integrity of contractual agreements. 13 Therefore, at this time, the court is persuaded that a TRO should issue. The court 14 will consider Defendants’ arguments at the upcoming hearing for a preliminary 15 injunction. Accordingly, it is hereby ordered that Defendant (1) deliver immediately to 16 DIRECTV all contractually-required customer contact information, to allow DIRECTV to 17 complete the billing transition away from E&E; (2) notify immediately all accounts 18 previously serviced by E&E that E&E is no longer a DIRECTV dealer or billing agent, and 19 that those customers need to transition their accounts to DIRECTV directly or a new 20 DIRECTV dealer. 21 // 22 // 23 // 24 // 25 // 26 // 27 // 28 // 3 1 2 3 4 IV. CONCLUSION For the foregoing reasons, the court GRANTS Plaintiff’s application for a TRO. In addition, a Preliminary Injunction Hearing is set for Friday, September 1, 2017 at 1:00 p.m., unless the parties agree on another date and so advise the court. 5 6 IT IS SO ORDERED. 7 8 Dated: August 22, 2017 9 ___________________________________ 10 DEAN D. PREGERSON 11 UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 4

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