Robinson Bradshaw

Topic: Class Representatives

Disappointments and Silver Linings in North Carolina Class-Action Law

Life has its disappointments. Sometimes, you think you’ve won a free car, but it turns out that you’ve won only a couple of dollars. And sometimes, you think that an appellate court will clarify a thorny issue of class-action law, but the court leaves that issue unresolved. These scenarios coalesced in a recent decision from […]

Standing vs. Typicality in Class Actions: Blurry Lines and a Split of Authority

In general, a litigant cannot sue for another person’s injury. In that circumstance, the litigant has no “standing” to pursue those claims. But Rule 23 — at least in a broad sense — allows a class representative to assert claims for her own injuries and for the injuries experienced by others, at least if the […]

United States Supreme Court Questions Whether A Rule 23(b)(2) Class Can Challenge the Failure to Provide Noncitizens Bail Hearings

The United States Supreme Court, in a 5-3 decision authored by Justice Alito, reversed a Ninth Circuit case concluding that detained aliens have a statutory right to periodic bond hearings during the course of their extended detention.  See Jennings v. Rodriguez,  ____ U.S. ____, No. 15-1204 (U.S. Feb. 27, 2018).  The Court found that the Ninth […]

Court Denies Attempt to Recast ERISA Class Action as a Derivative Claim

According to the Company website, “Piggly Wiggly has been bringing home the bacon for millions of American families for over 100 years.” But a putative class of former employees of Piggly Wiggly filed a class action complaint in the District of South Carolina, asserting various claims under ERISA pertaining to the Company’s employee stock ownership […]

Is an Institutional Investor Subject to the PSLRA’s “Professional Plaintiff” Bar?

The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (“PSLRA”) establishes special rules in securities class actions. One such rule, found in 15 U.S.C. Sect. 78u-4(a)(3)(B)(vi) and known as the “Five-in-Three Provision,” prevents a “person” from serving as a lead plaintiff in “more than 5 securities class actions” during any three-year period. Does that rule, though, apply to institutional […]

Is a Class Representative Adequate if He Waives Viable Claims in Order to Preserve Commonality?

Class actions don’t work if the class representative has a conflict with the class he or she purportedly represents. As the United States Supreme Court noted over 70 years ago, “a selection of representatives for purposes of litigation, whose substantial interests are not necessarily or even probably the same as those whom they are deemed […]

Can a Class Action Proceed when the Named Plaintiff’s Claim Becomes Moot? A Recent View from the North Carolina Business Court

In this post we talk about two of our favorite things (relatively speaking): class actions and mootness.  We last looked at these issues when covering the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Campbell-Ewald Company v. Gomez, 136 S. Ct. 663 (2016).  There, the Court rejected the defendant’s attempt to “pick off” the named plaintiff in a […]

Dish Network Hopes for a New Trial of Telemarketing Class Action Lawsuit after $20.5 Million Jury Verdict

Dish Network has asked the Middle District of North Carolina for a new trial in its telemarketing class action lawsuit after a jury found Dish liable for violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. After a five-day trial ending on January 19th, a jury awarded damages to the class of $20.5 million. The lawsuit was […]

Seventh Circuit Weighs in on Offers of Judgment

In this space, we concentrate on class action decisions in the Carolinas, as well as Fourth Circuit and United States Supreme Court precedent. Occasionally, though, we venture beyond these jurisdictions to highlight issues of particular note, including those where courts are divided. We’ve previously reported here how offers of judgment interact with mootness. In Campbell-Ewald Co. […]

Congress Considering Major Class Action Reform Legislation

Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, recently introduced a bill that would make significant changes to federal class action litigation. The Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act of 2017 (H.R. 985) states that it is intended to allow prompt recoveries to plaintiffs with legitimate claims and “diminish abuses in class action […]