Plaintiffs’ Securities Claims Denied Class Treatment for Failure to Satisfy Predominance Requirement

On May 15, 2017, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York denied class treatment to a proposed class action alleging violations of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  In its opinion, the district court held that the plaintiffs failed to satisfy Rule 23(b)(3)’s predominance requirement because their “omission” claims were actually alleged misrepresentations not subject to a presumption of class-wide reliance. Continue reading “Plaintiffs’ Securities Claims Denied Class Treatment for Failure to Satisfy Predominance Requirement”

Supreme Court Reinforces the Primacy of the Federal Arbitration Act, Even Over a “Divine God-Given Right”

Author: Jeremy Gilman (former Partner at Benesch Law)

Kentucky law speaks of the right to jury trial in theological terms.  The Kentucky Constitution provides that “[t]he ancient mode of trial by jury shall be held sacred, and the right thereof remain inviolate, subject to such modifications as may be authorized by this Constitution.”  Expounding on that, the Kentucky Supreme Court noted in an opinion that “the drafters of our Constitution deemed the right to a jury trial to be inviolate, a right that cannot be taken away; and, indeed, a right that is sacred, thus denoting that right and that right alone as a divine God-given right.”  And no, that opinion did not issue in 1815; it issued 200 years later.  Continue reading “Supreme Court Reinforces the Primacy of the Federal Arbitration Act, Even Over a “Divine God-Given Right””

Federal Circuit Court of Appeals Puts the Class in Class Actions

Author: Jeremy Gilman (former Partner at Benesch Law)

The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals is best known for adjudicating patent disputes.  But that’s not the extent of its portfolio.  It also has exclusive appellate jurisdiction over decisions of the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, which, in turn, reviews decisions of the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.  Those tribunals adjudicate benefits claims by military veterans. Continue reading “Federal Circuit Court of Appeals Puts the Class in Class Actions”

Sixth Circuit Rules that the Class Action Fairness Act Means What it Says

Author: Jeremy Gilman (former Partner at Benesch Law)

A statute, distilled to its essence, is thought conveyed through words.  And when those words are understandable and coherently arranged, there’s nothing for courts to do when adjudicating disputes involving them, other than to apply them as written.

Simple, isn’t it?

In theory, yes.  But theories don’t wear judge’s robes. Continue reading “Sixth Circuit Rules that the Class Action Fairness Act Means What it Says”

Question: When Is a $3 Million Attorney Fee Award Painful?

Author: Jeremy Gilman (former Partner at Benesch Law)

Answer:  When your fee request was $25 million higher.

And so it was in In Re: Volkswagen “Clean Diesel” Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation, pending in federal court in San Francisco.  The case arose, in the court’s words, from VW’s “deliberate use of a defeat device – software designed to cheat emissions tests and deceive federal and state regulators – in nearly 600,000 Volkswagens- and Audi-branded turbocharged direct injection diesel engine vehicles sold in the United States.”  Continue reading “Question: When Is a $3 Million Attorney Fee Award Painful?”

Expect a Mess When Food and Class Actions Collide: Part 1

Author: Jeremy Gilman (former Partner at Benesch Law)

Remember eating pasta and spaghetti sauce as a kid?  Remember what it did to your shirt?  Your face?  Want to rekindle that memory?

Two recent cases will help you revive it.  One involves gumbo; the other, gourmet foods and ingredients.  Both involve putative class actions, and each created its own unique mess. Continue reading “Expect a Mess When Food and Class Actions Collide: Part 1”