Expedia prevails in overturning City of Los Angeles' $30 million transient occupancy tax assessment
Clients Expedia, Inc., Hotwire, Inc., Hotels.com LP
Internet travel company Expedia, Inc. completed a clean sweep on April 18, 2013 when it prevailed against the City of Los Angeles in an administrative mandamus proceeding challenging a $30 million transient occupancy tax ("TOT") assessment against Expedia, Inc.; Hotels.com; and Hotwire LP (the "Expedia Entities"). The Expedia Entities had previously prevailed against the cities of Anaheim, Santa Monica, San Diego, and San Francisco in connection with similar TOT litigation against the Expedia Entities. Jones Day has represented the Expedia Entities in all of these actions.
In a detailed opinion, the Los Angeles Superior Court (the Hon. Elihu Berle, presiding) granted the online travel companies' request for writ of mandate, denied the City of Los Angeles' cross-motion for judgment, and confirmed that the OTCs were not obligated to collect and remit TOT. In total, Jones Day has helped the Expedia Entities to reverse approximately $150 million in TOT assessments brought by cities and counties throughout California. Two of those decisions (Santa Monica and Anaheim) have been affirmed on appeal.
City of Los Angeles, California v. Hotels.com, LP et al., Judicial Council Coordinated Proceeding No. 4472