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Archive for November 19th, 2008

Class Action Blawgosphere Review “Lay Down the Gauntlet” Challenge of the Week

In Monday’s ClassActionBlawg entry, I commented about the possibility of “nested” class actions, or class actions seeking damages for breach of fiduciary duty for failing to make a claim in another securities class action.  Bruce Carton of Securities Docket was quick to point out in response that not only was I not the first comment about the possibility of the phenomenon, but that it had actually already happened, and that he came up with a name for it three years ago: “litigation about litigation.”

I might argue that “nested class actions” are really just a more specific subcategory of “litigation about litigation” but that wouldn’t be any fun.  Instead, the challenge this week is for you, the reader, to decide which term is going to be the VHS of class action scholarship and which is going to be Betamax (for those of you under 30, think HD-DVD versus Blu-Ray).  Of course, this probably means that you’ll pick something different altogether.  Maybe just: Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich…  Please feel free to post other suggestions in the comments below.

With that out of the way, here are some blog posts from the week that was that might be of interest to class action practitioners:

Class Action Decisions

CAFA Law Blog summarizes the latest in federal removal decisions discussing the $5 million amount-in-controversy standard under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA):

http://www.cafalawblog.com/-case-summaries-plaintiff-sues-whirlpool-over-washing-machines-whirlpool-gives-cafa-removal-a-spin-court-says-plaintiffs-motion-to-remand-is-all-washed-up.html

Class Action Defense Blog offers a summary of a decision addressing whether an offer of judgment to the named plaintiff under Rule 68, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, can moot claims brought on behalf of a putative class:

http://classactiondefense.jmbm.com/2008/11/class_action_defense_casesstew.html

The VLW Blog reports on a Virginia court’s decision not to certify a would-be class of purchasers of Virginia lottery scratch tickets who allegedly had no chance of winning the grand prize:

http://www.valawyersweekly.com/vlwblog/2008/11/18/class-denied-for-lottery-lawsuit/

Class Action News

The UCL Practitioner offers a scoop on a forthcoming California Supreme Court decision in case involving the efforts that a plaintiff must take to settle a case short of litigation before being entitled to attorneys’ fees under a state fee-shifting provision.

http://www.uclpractitioner.com/2008/11/breaking-news-supreme-court-to-hand-down-vasquez-attorneys-fees-decision-tomorrow.html

According to these reports from the AmLaw Daily and Corporate Legal Times, class action defense firm Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal scored a pro bono victory on the plaintiffs’ side, representing a class of developmentally disabled residents of state-owned assisted living facilities against the state of Illinois.

http://amlawdaily.typepad.com/amlawdaily/2008/11/sonnenschein-se.html

http://www.cltmag.com/sonnenschein-secures-pro-bono-class-action-victory-for-disabled-clients.html

NewsBusters follows up on a story covered by countless blogs last week (see last week’s CABWR) about a class action filed against a well-known lingerer retailer alleging that its bras contained formaldehyde, causing skin rashes:

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/jeff-poor/2008/11/17/good-morning-america-attacks-victorias-secret-faulty-bra-lawsuit

PartTimePoker discusses a class action filed by a group of poker players challenging the constitutionality of a law prohibiting online gambling:

http://news.parttimepoker.com/2008/11/14/uigea-update-legal-challeneges-class-action-suits-and-interesting-interreptations/

North Carolina Business Litigation Report provides an update on a class action seeking to enjoin a high-profile bank merger:

http://www.ncbusinesslitigationreport.com/2008/11/articles/class-actions/wachovia-shoots-back-says-its-board-of-directors-fulfilled-its-fiduciary-duties-in-negotiating-merger-with-wells-fargo/

Class Action Trends

The D&O Diary discusses trends in securities class actions involving claims of “credential inflation” by corporate executives:

http://www.dandodiary.com/2008/11/articles/securities-litigation/credential-inflation-portrayals-proceedings-and-prose/

Tech Law Prof Blog and The Consumerist discuss a case reflecting a possible trend in class actions involving marketing practices of social networking Internet sites:

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/tech_law_prof/2008/11/classmatecom-ma.html

http://consumerist.com/5085516/classmatescom-sued-because-classmates-werent-really-looking-for-him

Law and More examines the possibility of a class action suit on behalf of overparented children for causing shrunken nervous systems:

http://lawandmore.typepad.com/law_and_more/2008/11/you-shrunk-our-nervous-systems—class-action-suit-by-overparented-children.html

Gabe’s Guide to the e-Discovery Universe summarizes imminent trends in e-Discovery in class actions and other complex litigation to be spawned from the financial crisis.

http://gabesguide.com/?p=1437

Spam Notes covers class action trends in spam, social media, text messaging, and other technology, including this entry:

http://spamnotes.com/2008/11/12/text-message-price-fixing-class-action-filed-against-tmobile-sprint-verizon-att-and-vodafone.aspx

International Class Action Law

With Vigour and Zeal comments on trends relating to the res judicata effect of U.S. class action judgments in European countries (see related ClassActionBlawg entry here):

http://kranenburgesq.com/blog/2008/11/res-judicata-of-us-class-action-judgments/

Point of Law comments on an article discussing how entrepreneurial mass litigation might fare in Europe:

http://www.pointoflaw.com/archives/2008/11/will-aggregate.php

Tan Kin Lian’s Blog comments on a Financial Times article discussing a report on the lack of participation in U.S. securities class action settlements by Asian institutional investors (see ClassActionBlawg commentary here):

http://tankinlian.blogspot.com/2008/11/asians-fail-to-join-class-action-claims.html

Deadly Prose reports on a collective action being pursued on behalf of alleged victims sickened by tainted milk against a Chinese government-owned manufacturer (see ClassActionBlawg entry here):

http://www.deadlyprose.com/jurist-news-stories/2008/11/14/chinese-officials-fail-to-halt-class-action-law-suit.html

Mass Tort Litigation Blogdiscusses a decision by a Brazilian appellate court vacating an award in favor of a consumer “association” (reportedly formed by a doctor and three attorneys two weeks before the lawsuit was filed) against cigarette manufacturers for “indemnification,” finding that the defendants’ due process rights had been violated when they were not allowed to present certain evidence in their defense:

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/mass_tort_litigation/2008/11/brazil-vacates.html

Top Notch Class Action Lawyers

Finally, I noticed that H. Scott Leviant of The Complex Litigator is looking for new employment opportunities.  You’d do well to consider Scott if you have an opening for a top-notch class action lawyer.

http://www.thecomplexlitigator.com/2008/11/the-complex-litigator-will-consider-all-offers-of-gainful-employment-or-similar-associations.html

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