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Class Action

Fairness in Class Litigation Act - Podcast

Litigation Practice Group Podcast
Howard M. Erichson, Andrew Grossman April 03, 2017

On Saturday, March 11 the House passed the Fairness in Class Litigation Act by a vote of 220-201. The stated purpose of the Act is to “(1) assure fair and prompt recoveries for class members and multidistrict litigation plaintiffs; (2) diminish abuses in class action and mass tort litigation; and (3)  restore the intent of the framers…by ensuring Federal court consideration of interstate controversies of national importance consistent with diversity jurisdiction principles” (H.R.985, 2017).

The Bill amends the federal judicial code’s standards for the certification of class action. For example, the bill requires that proposed class members to show that they suffered the same type and degree of injury. The bill also limits the amount and timing of attorney’s fees in a class action. Attorney’s cannot be paid more than the class members, and they must be paid after the class members receive payment.

Andrew Grossman Partner at Baker & Hostetler LLP and Adjunct Scholar at the Cato Institute will join Professor Howard M. Erichson of Fordham to discuss the legislation as deliberations begin in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Featuring:

  • Professor Howard M. Erichson, Professor of Law, Fordham University School of Law
  • Andrew Grossman, Partner, Baker & Hostetler LLP, Adjunct Scholar, the Cato Institute

Justice Scalia's Contributions to Antitrust Law - Audio/Video

2016 National Lawyers Convention
Frank H. Easterbrook, Deborah A. Garza, C. Scott Hemphill, Douglas H. Ginsburg November 23, 2016

In his confirmation hearing, Justice Scalia told the Senators that, as a law school student, he had never really understood antitrust law; later, he learned that he shouldn't have understood it, because it did not make any sense then. It should come as no surprise, that in his subsequent time on the Court, Justice Scalia strove to rectify that problem, and succeeded through clearly written majority decisions that changed the direction of jurisprudence on monopolization (U.S. v. Trinko) and class certification in massive antitrust and other business class actions (Wal-Mart v. Dukes, Comcast v. Behrens), and powerful dissents. As a modern intellectual leader of the "Chicago school" of economics, Justice Scalia played an important role in shaping the Court's approach to antitrust law and hence development of the law in the lower courts. It is a good time to consider the impact of his legacy, including how lasting those decisions will be, whether and how the course of antitrust jurisprudence could change and who will take his place in the Court on these issues.

This panel was held on November 17, 2016, during the 2016 National Lawyers Convention in Washington, DC.

Corporations, Securities & Antitrust: Justice Scalia's Contributions to Antitrust Law
1:45 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.
East Room

  • Hon. Frank H. Easterbrook, U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • Ms. Deborah A. Garza, Partner, Covington & Burling LLP
  • Prof. C. Scott Hemphill, Professor of Law, New York University School of Law
  • Moderator: Hon. Douglas H. Ginsburg, U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit

The Mayflower Hotel
Washington, DC

Class Action Reform?: Spokeo v. Robins Decided - Podcast

Administrative Law & Regulation Practice Group Podcast
Alan C. Raul May 18, 2016

In a 6-2 decision issued on Monday, May 16, the United States Supreme Court vacated and remanded Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins for re-argument in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Thomas Robins filed a suit under the Fair Credit Reporting Act against Spokeo, a company that operates a “people search engine,” for publishing incorrect information about him, information that he claimed harmed his employment prospects by falsely making him appear overqualified for the types of employment he was seeking at the time. The Supreme Court rejected the Ninth Circuit’s analysis finding that Mr. Robins had standing to sue, and instructed the Ninth Circuit to consider the question again. Spokeo raises big questions about big data, class action litigation, and the legitimacy of certain statutorily authorized private rights of action. Our expert offered his analysis of the opinion, the case’s prospects going forward, and its potential broader impact on the law.

Featuring:

  • Hon. Alan C. Raul, Partner, Sidley Austin LLP

Amgen Inc. v. Harris - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 2-24-16 featuring George Conway
George T. Conway III February 24, 2016

On January 25, 2016, the Supreme Court decided Amgen Inc v. Harris without oral argument. Former employees of an Amgen subsidiary had participated in a benefit plan that offered ownership of Amgen stock. When the value of Amgen stock fell in 2007, stockholders filed a class action against plan fiduciaries alleging a breach of fiduciary duties, including the duty of prudence, under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. Although the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit initially reversed a district court decision dismissing the class action complaint, the U.S. Supreme Court then vacated the Ninth Circuit’s judgment and remanded the case in light of the Supreme Court’s then-recent decision Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer, which set forth the standards for stating a claim for breach of the duty of prudence against fiduciaries who manage employee stock ownership plans. 

On remand, the Ninth Circuit reiterated its conclusion that the plaintiffs’ complaint stated a claim for breach of fiduciary duty, and the Supreme Court again granted certiorari. In a per curiam opinion the Court reversed the judgment of the Ninth Circuit by a vote of 9-0, holding that the Circuit had failed to properly evaluate the complaint. In its current form, the Supreme Court concluded, the complaint failed to state a claim for breach of the duty of prudence. In remanding the case, however, the Court indicated that the district court could decide in the first instance whether the stockholders might amend their complaint in order to adequately plead a claim for breach of the duty of prudence.

To discuss the case, we have George T. Conway III, who is Partner, Litigation at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz.