A Federal Judicial Center publication entitled Impact of CAFA on the Federal Courts: Fourth Interim Report was issued in April 2008 and is now available at the FJC website: http://www.fjc.gov/library/fjc_catalog.nsf
The report marks the end of the first phase of a study commissioned by the Judicial Conference Advisory Committee on Civil Rules to analyze the impact of the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 on the federal courts.
There are some interesting conclusions reached in the report. The findings suggest that while CAFA has had an impact on the number of class actions being litigated in federal courts, it may not be working precisely as anticipated. For example, in general, the report concludes that there has been a significant increase in the number of diversity class actions filed originally in federal courts as compared to the pre-CAFA period. However, certain types of lawsuits, such as torts-personal injury cases (as distinguished from torts-property damage cases) have not increased. Moreover, the report concludes that the increase in diversity class actions in federal courts during the period surveyed “has not been driven primarily by removals.” Instead, the report describes the results regarding the number of diversity cases removed to federal court as “varied.”
For a link to the full document, click here.
Supplement April 16 9:00 a.m.
Drug and Device Law Blog has posted an extensive analysis of the report’s findings. Thanks to Mark Herrmann for forwarding the link: