Class Actions

Class actions developed as a form of litigation in which a group of people claiming similar injuries or damages could band together to sue the same defendant. Nowadays, however, these cases are often pursued with the sole intention to shakedown a defendant—hurting businesses and damaging the American economy. Read More...

The sheer size of some classes is enormous—thousands to sometimes, millions of individual claimants come together in single class actions. The large size of a proposed class could result in huge damage awards, making these cases very risky for businesses despite strong defenses. Consequently, once a court decides that a case can proceed as a class action, most defendants end up settling the case instead of risking a trial—even if they have not done anything wrong.

Unfortunately, plaintiffs’ lawyers have exploited businesses’ caution by filing many meritless class actions—all with the goal of scoring a jackpot settlement where consumers receive minuscule amounts, and lawyers walk away with huge fees. For example, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and our securities laws have sparked enormous class action lawsuits that significantly damage legitimate American businesses all while benefiting plaintiff lawyers. Even more alarming are cy pres cases where some or all of the settlement proceeds go to a charity rather than the class members. The U.S. Department of Justice recently ramped up efforts to review abusive class action practices to curb further exploitation.

The Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 (CAFA) helped curb many class action abuses by moving most large, interstate class actions to federal courts, where examination of class actions is generally more rigorous than in state courts. To help address the problems not resolved by CAFA, the Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) believes The Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act (FICALA) would help to ensure that class actions are fulfilling their intended purpose. FICALA aims to bring fairness to the current state of class action litigation by closing various loopholes that increase meritless cases, limiting conflicts of interest between these plaintiffs’ attorneys and their class member clients, as well as bringing needed reforms to multidistrict litigation and fraudulent joinder standards.


Suggested Resources


All Results for Class Actions

  1. In the News Today - July 2, 2020

    July 02, 2020 | News

    Will A Class Of Nearly Every American Will Be Created In PFAS Case?... Read More

  2. ICYMI: Roundup Settlement: Business As Usual For Tort Lawyer Bandits

    July 01, 2020 | News

    This week, ILR President Harold Kim discussed the Bayer Monsanto Roundup settlement in an op-ed that ran in RealClear Politics... Read More

  3. ILR President Harold Kim: Roundup Settlement Is Business As Usual For Tort Lawyer Bandits

    June 30, 2020 | News

    Bayer AG recently announced it would pay $10.5 billion to settle tens of thousands of lawsuits claiming Roundup weed killer causes cancer. After the checks clear, Roundup will remain on the market. Millions of consumers and farmers will continue using the product because, according to the Environmental Protection Agency and regulators around the world, Roundup doesn't cause cancer.... Read More

  4. Bayer Reaches Settlement In Roundup Cancer Lawsuits

    June 25, 2020 | News

    ... Read More

  5. In the News Today - May 29, 2020

    May 29, 2020 | News

    There's Too Much Empty Space In Movie Theater Candy, Lawsuit Complains... Read More

  6. In the News Today - May 26, 2020

    May 26, 2020 | News

    Class Action Lawyers Take Krab Vs. Crab Debate To Ninth Circuit... Read More

  7. In the News Today May 21, 2020

    May 21, 2020 | News

    As thalidomide lawsuits collapse, major plaintiffs firm is sued by own client... Read More

  8. ILR Briefly COVID-19 Series: State Liability Problems and Solutions

    May 21, 2020 | Research

    As states reopen and continue to respond to the needs of their citizens and economies, it is important that they consider offering liability protections to prevent a wave of COVID-19 lawsuits at the state level. This edition of ILR Briefly documents major hot spots for COVID-19 litigation under state law and provides an array of policy solutions to prevent lawsuits from disrupting states' economic recoveries.... Read More

  9. Taco Bell wins Chalupa price case after claiming lawyers doctored evidence, plaintiffs ignored menu

    April 27, 2020 | News

    A federal judge has ruled that the couple who sued Taco Bell because their Chalupa boxes cost 99 cents more than they thought failed to pay attention to the price on the menu, and that evidence presented by the plaintiff's lawyer may have been doctored, according to a report in Legal Newsline.... Read More

  10. In The News Today - April 22, 2020

    April 22, 2020 | News

    Second Circuit Tosses Dunkin' Donuts Class Action Over Meaning of 'Steak'... Read More