In Arkansas Teacher Retirement System v. State Street Corporation, — F.4th —-, 2022 WL 391450 (1st Cir. Feb. 9, 2022), the First Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district court’s sanction of law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP (“Lieff Cabraser”) related to class action attorney’s fees.

Lieff Cabraser, along with several other firms, represented a class of investors in a challenge to charges imposed on foreign exchange products.  After years of litigation and mediation, the parties reached a settlement of $300 million.  Relying on representations made by class counsel, the district court awarded class counsel almost $75 million—roughly 25% of the total settlement.

Continue Reading First Circuit Upholds Sanctions Related to Attorney’s Fees

As we touched on last summer,[1] whether a district court may certify a class action without resolving challenges to the admissibility of fact or expert evidence is still an unsettled question.  This question is particularly important with respect to expert evidence, given that class certification frequently hinges on competing experts’ opinions regarding the propriety of an aggregate action.  If an expert’s opinion is deemed inadmissible, the party proffering it is almost certain to be on the receiving end of an adverse certification ruling.

Continue Reading Northern District of Ohio Holds Expert Evidence Must Be Admissible to Be Considered at Class Certification

A new Seventh Circuit decision – Santiago v. City of Chicago – bolsters the strategy among some class action defense lawyers to not bifurcate class certification and merits discovery.[i] This strategy instead contemplates that the opposition to Plaintiff’s class certification motion will be filed simultaneously with a motion for summary judgment. The Seventh Circuit’s

Many states have statutes establishing that, as a condition of registering to do business in a state, a foreign corporation consents to general personal jurisdiction in that state.  Since the Supreme Court’s decision in Daimler AG v. Bauman, 571 U.S. 117 (2014) tightening the scope of the general personal jurisdiction doctrine, lower courts have

In Association of American Physicians & Surgeons v. United States Food and Drug Administration (“AAPS”), __ F.4th __, 2021 WL 4097325 (6th Cir. Sept. 9, 2021), the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently cast doubt on the continued viability of the associational standing doctrine.

Continue Reading Associations, stand down: Sixth Circuit Casts Doubt on Associational Standing

Last year, the Seventh and D.C. Circuits addressed the contours of personal jurisdiction in federal class actions.  Now, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has joined the mix in Moser v. Benefytt, Inc., __ F.4th __, 2021 WL 3504041 (9th Cir. Aug. 2021).

In Moser, after the district court denied the defendant’s

On July 16, in Smith v. Professional Transportation Inc.,[1] the Seventh Circuit answered what might at first seem like an unnecessary question:  how does a plaintiff “commence” an FLSA lawsuit?  Under most circumstances, of course, a named plaintiff need only file a Complaint, and the lawsuit is off and running.  But unlike Rule 23 class actions, the FLSA requires putative collective action members to affirmatively opt into a collective action by giving their consent in writing.  Specifically, the statute says that “[n]o employee shall be a party plaintiff to any such [collective] action unless he gives his consent in writing to become such a party” and the consent is filed with the court.  29 U.S.C. § 216(b).  In other words, each employee’s lawsuit is “commenced,” and the statute of limitations stops running for that individual, on the date he or she files a signed consent.

Continue Reading How to ‘Commence’ an FLSA Lawsuit: More Than Meets the Eye

The following article originally appeared on Law360 (Part 1 and Part 2).

In the 2013 case Comcast Corp. v. Behrend,[1] the U.S. Supreme Court explained that a party seeking class certification must satisfy the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 through evidentiary proof.

What few practitioners may recall, however, is the

On June 25, 2021, the United States Supreme Court issued its opinion in TransUnion LLC v. Ramirez (“Ramirez”), holding that all plaintiffs, to include absent class members, must demonstrate that they have suffered a concrete harm in order to have Article III standing to sue for damages.  Building off its decision in Spokeo v. Robins, LLC, the Court confirmed that even where Congress passes a law creating an individual cause of action, uninjured plaintiffs do not have standing to sue in federal court simply because that law is violated.  Justice Kavanaugh, writing for a 5-4 majority, summarized the Court’s holding in five simple words: “No concrete harm, no standing.”

Continue Reading No-Injury Class Actions: U.S. Supreme Court Issues Final Ruling (Part II)