Chula Vista Settles Class Action Lawsuit for Wireless Phone Tax and Reduces Tax Rate
Effective March 1, 2014 the Utility Users' Tax rate for telephone services will be reduced from 5% to 4.75%.
View the Administrative Ruling reducing the rate here.
An updated Utility Users' Tax Remittance form can be accessed here.
This tax rate reduction is the result of a class action settlement between wireless phone users and the City of Chula Vista that included making $8 million available for funding for rebates and refunds of the city’s telephone user’s tax and payment of litigation expenses and attorneys’ fees. The lawsuit, Carla Villa, et al. v. City of Chula Vista, was brought by two Chula Vista residents on behalf of Chula Vista taxpayers and was filed by the San Diego law offices of CaseyGerry and the Newport Beach offices of Capretz & Associates. The City of Chula Vista disagreed with the lawsuit’s claim that certain aspects of the tax are unlawful, but, because the issues are complex and continued litigation would be expensive, the City believed it was in the best interest of its citizens to settle the case.
The settlement made cash rebates available to Chula Vista wireless phone users who paid taxes on their wireless phone bills from April 2010 through April 2013. Additional information about the settlement and claim process is available at http://www.chulavistacellphonetaxsettlement.com.
Note: The rebate claim period is now closed.
Next Steps: The City will clarify how its telephone users tax ordinance applies to wireless phone services.