Supreme Court Rules Class Certification Requires Evidence of Damages Supported by a Valid Legal Theory

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Effectively equates "rigorous analysis" with "merits analysis" -

On March 27, 2013, in Comcast Corp. v. Behrend, the United States Supreme Court reaffirmed that district courts must perform a "rigorous analysis" of whether a putative class meets the predominance requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(b)(3) — even if that entails delving into the merits of the plaintiffs' claims.

The named plaintiffs — and putative class representatives — were subscribers to Comcast's cable-television services. They alleged that Comcast's practice of clustering operations violated antitrust law by creating unlawful monopolies that drove up prices for subscribers in the Philadelphia cluster.

The plaintiffs sought certification under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(b)(3), which requires that "questions of law or fact common to class members predominate over any questions affecting only individual members."

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