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District of New Hampshire Denies Remand Under CAFA’s Local Controversy Exception

On November 30th, in Brown v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., United States District Judge Joseph Laplante of the District of New Hampshire denied plaintiffs’ motion to remand two related class action lawsuits based...more

Bellerman v. Fitchburg Gas & Electric Light Co. – Lack of Injury in Massachusetts Consumer Claims

In 2014, we posted about the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court’s decision in Bellermann v. Fitchburg Gas & Electric Light Co. In that case, plaintiffs sought relief under the Massachusetts consumer protection statute,...more

Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins and the No-Injury Class Action

Class action practitioners have been closely watching Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, a case before the Supreme Court on appeal from the Ninth Circuit. Spokeo presented the Court with the opportunity to decide whether a plaintiff...more

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Publishes Proposed Rule Precluding Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Clauses

As we reported last year, in October 2015 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau published an outline of proposals that would limit the use of arbitration provisions in contracts for consumer financial products. On May 5,...more

First Circuit Denies Review in Building Products Case

On October 2, 2015, we posted about the District of Massachusetts' denial of class certification in a case in which we represent a building products company that sold allegedly defective decking. We're pleased to announce...more

Justice Scalia and Class Actions

No one has done more to shape class action law than Justice Antonin Scalia. His unexpected passing yesterday, even while important class action cases remain under advisement, will spark a renewed push to tilt class action...more

Think You Can Moot Plaintiff's Claim With a Rule 68 Offer of Judgment? Think Again

As we have previously noted, federal appellate courts have been split on whether a defendant can moot a class action by making a Rule 68 offer of judgment, agreeing to pay all of the damages to which the named plaintiff seeks...more

Bezdek v. Vibram: The First Circuit Upholds a Class Settlement

On December 31st, the First Circuit approved a class action settlement in a case involving claims of deceptive advertising. While breaking no new ground, the court's decision provides useful guidance to parties negotiating a...more

Class Action Settlements: Deciding Whether to Embark on the Long and Winding Road

We all know the story: most class actions settle. Of course, some do not, especially where the court denies class certification or grants defendant’s dispositive motion. But as between settlement and trial, settlement is by...more

Comcast and its Discontents

Shortly after the Supreme Court’s decisions in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541 (2011) and AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, 563 U.S. 321 (2011), I appeared before a federal district judge on a motion to dismiss...more

CFPB Proposal Would Make Class Actions More Likely. Here's What's Next.

On Wednesday, October 7, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued proposals that would, if adopted, limit the use of arbitration provisions in contracts for consumer financial products. The CFPB’s proposals would not...more

First Circuit Weighs In On Rule 68 Mootness Issue

In a decision issued on August 21, 2015, the First Circuit added its voice to the recent chorus of federal appellate courts holding that an unaccepted Rule 68 offer of judgment, served before a motion for class certification...more

Splitting the Difference: Recent Developments in Circuit Splits Over Class Action Lawsuits

It has been a busy summer for federal appellate courts deciding class action issues. Amidst all the sound and fury, this summer's decisions so far highlight two splits among the federal circuits, while also diminishing if...more

Mulling Mullins

The 7th Circuit's July 28th decision in Mullins v. Direct Digital, LLC has already created quite a stir. Plaintiffs' lawyers are citing it as the antidote to the 3rd Circuit's recent line of cases on the implied requirement...more

A Byrd in the Hand

Recently, I had the privilege of moderating a panel in Boston discussing hot topics in class actions. We had a terrific group of panelists, including three (besides myself) who represent defendants in class actions and one...more

OMNICARE: Supreme Court Clarifies Whether Statements of Opinion by Companies and their Executives are Actionable under the Federal...

This week the Supreme Court resolved a split among federal appellate courts over whether a statement of opinion in a company’s registration statement can be actionable under Section 11 of the Securities Act of 1933 if the...more

To Remove or Not to Remove in Massachusetts?

I frequently am asked whether a company sued in Massachusetts state court would be better off in federal court. Despite the common perception that defendants in any state are always better off in federal court, there has...more

To Remove or Not To Remove?

When the Class Action Fairness Act was passed ten years ago, many businesses breathed a collective sigh of relief. No longer would the plaintiffs' bar be able to keep their cases in certain magnet jurisdictions (a/k/a...more

In re Nexium: The heartburn drug case that may cause heartburn

In a November 30, 2013 post, we wrote about the District of Massachusetts' class certification decision in the antitrust case, In re Nexium. There, the district court certified a class of consumers and other payors who...more

Shedding Light on the Vexing Problem of Issue Certification

This week I attended the annual Class Actions Seminar sponsored by DRI (the Defense Research Institute). It was an excellent program, covering many recent trends in class action practice of interest to corporate counsel and...more

First Circuit Upholds Use of Retained Asset Accounts in ERISA Class Action

On July 2, 2014, a unanimous panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit held that Unum Life Insurance Company’s practice of using Retained Asset Accounts (RAAs) to pay death benefits claims on group...more

So you want to be a class action defense lawyer.

Not every litigator wants to learn class actions; in fact, most do not. After all, why would anyone want to get mired in the procedural morass of a class action when they could be spending their time handling cases that have...more

You Can't Always Get What You Want: D. Mass. Awards Small Fraction Of Requested Attorneys' Fees In ZIP Code Class Settlement

In an opinion reminiscent of the famous Rolling Stones song, Judge Richard Stearns on December 26th awarded plaintiffs' class counsel fees of $75,959.00 of a requested amount of $450,000 for work performed in connection with...more

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