Class Action Defense

Our attorneys have extensive class action defense experience. We have represented major public companies – including manufacturers, consumer products companies, and financial services companies – in a broad range of putative class actions, including cases alleging products liability, product defects, consumer fraud, antitrust, false advertising, and securities law claims.

The firm’s attorneys have successfully handled the most complex problems facing class action defendants by defeating motions for class certification, successfully arguing for removals and dismissals, enforcing class releases, and negotiating innovative settlements. Our lawyers have defeated class certification in over thirty consumer fraud class actions and have settled hundreds of liability cases on favorable terms.

Our lawyers also counsel clients on initiatives to address litigation risks and exposure, thus reducing the potential for future class actions. We strive to help our clients implement “best practices”.

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Successfully defended one of the largest Korean consumer product design and manufacturing companies in products liability class action alleging breach of warranty, fraud, and violation of state consumer protection laws relating to purported defects in plasma televisions. Matter was dismissed with prejudice.

Represented a bank in class certification discovery of $50 billion class action lawsuit.

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A recent edition of Law360 reported on the U.S. Supreme Court’s 6-3 ruling which states that laws hostile to class action waivers cannot circumvent the Federal Arbitration Act. In this article, Larry Gresser weighs in on the significance of the decision.
The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that courts can't overturn a class arbitration waiver simply because it would cost plaintiffs more to arbitrate the claim than they could possibly recover. Gresser explains, “The other shoe has dropped…The lesson of Justice Scalia's majority opinion in American Express is that class action waivers will be enforced even when the arbitration clause is not customer friendly and the individual plaintiff's cost of arbitrating a claim is certain to exceed the potential recovery."
The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that courts cannot second-guess an arbitrator's interpretation of a contract, backing an arbitrator's ruling that a doctor's pursuit of class arbitration against insurer Oxford Health Plans LLC was permitted. Gresser explains why the unanimous ruling is significant noting, “The critical question in Oxford v. Sutter — whether, after Stolt-Nielsen, ... the class action procedure is available in arbitration — was answered in the affirmative."
The U.S. Supreme Court granted cert on Halliburton’s petition for challenging the Basic v. Levinson precedent on fraud-on-the-market theory.  What are the arguments on both sides of this issue and what will the Court likely hold? This article will explore arguments on both sides of this issue and it's potential impact to certification of securities fraud class actions.
In Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc., the U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether to overrule or modify the “fraud-on-the-market” presumption of reliance in 10b-5 securities fraud class actions. The fraud-on-the-market presumption has helped plaintiffs surmount the class certification hurdle for over 25 years, and if it is overruled or modified, class certification in securities fraud cases may become a more challenging — and costly — endeavor.
Employment class actions are disruptive, and at their worst, can be costly PR nightmares. Recent SCOTUS decisions may ultimately reduce the threat of employment class actions — but this hasn’t quite happened yet.
Recent Supreme Court decisions have made the arbitration clause a potent weapon against class actions in many areas of the law. Certainly in the wake of Concepcion, Italian Colors, and Oxford, businesses should consider including in their contracts specific language regarding arbitration clauses.
It is rare these days for a court to deny a motion to compel arbitration, especially where the parties are subject to an arbitration agreement. However, using the fundamental principle “arbitration is a matter of contract,” the Court in Zeltser v. Merrill Lynch & Co. did just that.
It’s a changed world for class action litigation, thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court – one in which arbitration agreements are powerful, and class certification may be significantly more difficult to achieve. This article contains practice tips for navigating the new, and still evolving, legal landscape.
The recent comScore decision and others allowing privacy cases to proceed in the absence of actual damages may imply that the legal landscape is changing. In fact, comScore suggests that if a lead plaintiff in a purported privacy class action can overcome the standing hurdle by citing statutory damages, then the class certi­fication hurdle may also be manageable.
A discussion on emerging best practices for drafting arbitration clauses with class action waivers.
Through an exploration of the decision in the case of Rapcinsky v Skinnygirl Cocktails, L.L.C., this article defends the importance of paying close attention to the specifics surrounding the proposed class representative’s claims and how personal experience could be grounds for defeating a class.

Mr. Stewart opines on the growing consensus that class actions are not always the best means by which to resolve complex litigation.

Partner Melissa Maxman spoke at the 22nd Annual National Institute on Class Actions hosted by the American Bar Association in Chicago. The panel discussion, “Big Price Tags, Big Issues”, explored the proliferation of third-party financing and its challenges.
Lawrence T Gresser spoke at the 2017 Forum on Defense Class Action regarding Rule 12, The Motion to Dismiss. The session covered how the courts have applied Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544 (2007) and Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. 1937 (2009) at the pleading stage, and reviewed the current status of other defenses that are often raised by defense counsel in motions to dismiss putative class actions.
ABA 20th Annual National Institute on Class Actions in Las Vegas NV