By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A new legal battle could impact the future of mall reopening plans in Los Angeles County in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

A federal lawsuit, filed by the owner of the Westfield chain of malls, is challenging a public health order that keeps malls closed, despite state guidelines that allow them to reopen at reduced capacity.

In the suit, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield alleges that the local order inflicts undue hardship on thousands of Angelenos whose livelihoods depends on operating their businesses within enclosed malls.

URW further alleges that the decision is arbitrary and not supported by health data.

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has not yet commented on the suit.