Professor Myriam Gilles holds the distinction of having called the arbitration issue earlier than almost any other academic.  So when she writes a follow-up, it’s well worth paying attention. That follow up is here, in her latest working paper, Killing Them with Kindness: Examining "Consumer-Friendly" Arbitration Clauses after AT&T Mobility vs. Concepcion. And her findings indicate that corporate defendants are issuing "consumer-friendly" arbitration clauses. (Though, as she points out, few are as generous as the AT&T clause that "won" in Concepcion.)

Professor Gilles is primarily concerned with the popular plaintiff argument that arbitration clauses should not be enforced … Continue Reading

For the last six or seven years, a growing academic literature has put forward the argument that the primary justification for class actions is not to compensate absent class members, but to deter corporate wrongdoing. That justification has formed the basis of a number of arguments, from Professor Fitzpatrick’s proposal that class action attorneys earn a 100% commission on their cases to Professor Lahav’s that the law should go a little easier on the class-action lawyer. It also underlies many of the fears that tightening the class-action rules may lead to rampant corporate misconduct.

Few practitioners or scholars have … Continue Reading

Last week, my post on the Ten Most Interesting Articles in 2011 got linked by Professor Alexandra Lahav at the fine Mass Tort Litigation Blog. She recommended my list of ten interesting but unwritten articles to students looking for notes topics, although she cautioned that 

I don’t agree with Mr. Trask’s assessment of my own work, legal academia or what people ought to write about …

Which is a completely fair opinion, even though I’m not entirely sure what those assessments are myself. Leaving aside what I think of Professor Lahav’s work (I’ve featured it three times on this … Continue Reading

Cardozo Law School professor Myriam Gilles has a new article in the latest issue of the DePaul Law Review, "Class Dismissed: Contemporary Judicial Hostility to Small-Claims Consumer Class Actions."

Provocative title aside, Gilles’s article is ostensibly about the ascertainability requirement. That said, it seems remarkably unconcerned with cases that actually discuss ascertainability. (For example, it tries to tie acertainability doctrinally to either predominance or the notice requirement, ignoring those cases where courts have developed ascertainability from numerosity. The article also doesn’t concern itself with merits-based classes, even though these classes wind up vexing a number of courts at certificationContinue Reading