Securities Litigation Reform

Private securities class actions are lawsuits filed on behalf of shareholders against publicly traded companies alleged to have defrauded their investors. Supporters of these cases claim they are necessary to compensate shareholders and stop corporate transgressions. However, plaintiffs’ lawyers are the real beneficiaries of securities class actions, not investors. Read More...

There is enormous pressure on companies to settle these cases because of the cost of going to trial, the burden they inflict on management, and the risk of a runaway verdict. This typically results in settlements even in cases where the merit of the claim is questionable. The individuals responsible for wrongdoing rarely make a significant contribution, and those whom the securities class action system is supposed to protect—small, individual retail investors—are the ones who, in fact, benefit the least.

These cases threaten the health of the U.S. economy by imposing huge costs on American businesses, investors, and employees, while hurting the global competiveness of the U.S. securities markets. Companies actively question whether they want to access the U.S. securities markets and expose themselves to the problematic liability our current system imposes. The number of publicly registered American companies is now roughly half of what it was approximately 20 years ago and the fact that nearly one-in-ten public companies will be hit with a securities class action this year, could certainly dissuade companies from going public.

To curb securities litigation abuses, and improve the health of the U.S. economy, Congress, the courts and the Securities and Exchange Commission should consider commonsense reforms that would expose relationships between securities class action attorneys and plaintiffs, limit the lottery aspect of securities litigation and drive out meritless cases from the courts.


Suggested Resources

  • Containing the Contagion: Proposals to Reform the Broken Securities Class Action System

    Containing the Contagion: Proposals to Reform the Broken Securities Class Action System

    February 25, 2019

    Record-high numbers of securities class action filings are swamping the protections that Congress created in 1995. In fact, the likelihood that a public company will be sued has never been greater, and the bulk of these lawsuits show the classic signs of litigation abuse. However, solutions are at hand. This research proposes regulatory and legislative action to contain the securities litigation contagion. Read More

  • Risk and Reward: The Securities Fraud Class Action Lottery

    Risk and Reward: The Securities Fraud Class Action Lottery

    February 25, 2019

    Securities fraud class action lawyers are playing the "litigation lottery," filing often meritless cases against big companies on the off-chance of a big settlement. This research looks at all securities fraud class actions filed between 2005 and 2016 to reveal the true incentives that motivate plaintiffs' lawyers to roll the dice on these lawsuits, despite their high dismissal rate. Read More

All Results for Securities Litigation Reform

  1. Attorney Says "Stupid Mistake" Led To State Street Overbilling

    June 27, 2019 | News

    The managing partner at Boston-based Thornton Law Firm said he made a "stupid mistake" by signing a false declaration of hours worked in the now-infamous State Street securities case, Law360 reports. ... Read More

  2. Time To End "Racket" of "Worthless" M&A Securities Lawsuits, Judge Says

    June 26, 2019 | News

    U.S. District Judge Thomas Durkin ordered plaintiffs' attorneys to return over $322,000 in fees to the company they sued because their complaints should have been tossed from court, Reuters reports.... Read More

  3. In the News Today - June 20, 2019

    June 20, 2019 | News

    "Amid a Flood of Securities Class-Actions, the Supreme Court Must Act"... Read More

  4. In The News Today - June 12, 2019

    June 12, 2019 | News

    "Chubb Sounds Securities Litigation Alarm, Calls for Reform"... Read More

  5. New Report: 61 Percent Of M&A Litigation Costs Went to Lawyers

    June 11, 2019 | News

    A new report released by the Chubb insurance company found that 61 percent of the costs of merger and acquisition securities litigation went to lawyers, rather than shareholders.... Read More

  6. In the News Today - June 5, 2019

    June 05, 2019 | News

    Cost of D&O Insurance In Australia Is Up 122%. Is Securities Litigation To Blame?... Read More

  7. "Here Come the Lawsuits:" The Rise of IPO-Related Securities Litigation

    June 03, 2019 | News

    A feature piece from Inc. Magazine documents the rise of IPO-related securities litigation, and whether or not it's deterring companies and startups from going public in the first place.... Read More

  8. NERA Predicts Nine Percent Increase in Total Securities Lawsuit Filings This Year

    April 23, 2019 | News

    A new report from the NERA Economic Consulting group on the securities class action filings from the year's first quarter predicts a nine percent increase in total filings for all of 2019.... Read More

  9. In the News Today - April 18, 2019

    April 18, 2019 | News

    Accounting-Related Securities Lawsuits On The Rise... Read More

  10. Securities Lawsuits Are Increasing D&O Insurance Premiums

    April 16, 2019 | News

    According to the Wall Street Journal, the record number of securities class action lawsuit filings is increasing the cost of D&O insurance for foreign businesses in the U.S. market.... Read More