Tax advisory company sues Google over suspension of advertising account
Posted on 28th March 2022 at 20:48
Platform removed some of My Tax Back adverts on grounds they were not eligible
An Irish company that specialises in tax preparation and advisory services has launched High Court proceedings over the suspension of its advertising account by Google.
The action has been brought by My Tax Back Ltd, which operates the mytaxrefunds.ie website, over Google Ireland Ltd’s decision to suspend and completely exclude the company from advertising on Google.com by way of the Google Ads service.
The court heard that the company had advertised with Google for some years.
However, at the start of 2022, Google removed some of its adverts on the grounds that they were not eligible and in breach of Google’s terms of service.
The company disputes Google’s assertions and says it should be allowed to advertise tax preparation services.
The company was suspended from advertising any of it services on the platform on March 11th last.
It now estimates that it is losing €9,500 per day because of the suspension.
In a sworn statement to the court company’s managing director and sole shareholder Gary O’Brien claims that without access to that platform the company is “highly unlikely to survive” should the dispute between the parties take more than six months to determine.
The Co Donegal-based Mr O’Brien also said that his company’s competitors continue to use the defendant’s advertising platform for the same taxation services provided by his company.
Represented by Arthur Cunningham Bl, instructed by Peter Boyle and Co Solicitors, My Tax Back seeks an injunction directing Google to allow Tax Back to advertise the tax preparation services it provides with Google Ads.
That order, if granted by the court, would remain in place pending the outcome of the full hearing of the dispute.
In its action, the company seeks declarations that its advertising account with the internet firm was unlawfully suspended. It also seeks a declaration from the court that the services it provides are not restricted by Google’s prohibition on promotions.
It seeks an order to have the agreement it claims it entered with Google to display its advertising, and damages for alleged breach of contract.
The matter came before Mr Justice Senan Allen on Monday.
The judge, on an ex parte basis, granted the applicant permission to serve short notice of the injunction proceedings on Google.
The matter will return before the court next week.
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