Tuesday, February 15, 2005
A hilarious article over at Scrappleface discusses the recent Senate vote that passed class action reform.

My take: The changes this bill would enact are very minor and the chicken-little reactions from some of the trial lawyer groups are simply absurd. All this bill would do is push a small sub-set of class-actions that include classes from more than one state into the federal courts. It makes sense that federal courts should decide cases that will impact a nationwide class.

Specifically: "class action suits would be heard in state court if the primary defendant and more than one-third of the plaintiffs are from the same state. But if fewer than one-third of the plaintiffs are from the same state as the primary defendant, the case would go to federal court. At least $5 million would have to be at stake for a federal court to hear a class-action suit."

The bill also puts some limits on legal fees in certain types of cases. Worst case scenario for the trial lawyers though is that they would receive their fees on an hourly basis - the way most lawyers bill their clients anyway.

This is a good start but more class-action reform is necessary.
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I am an attorney in Chicago. Politically speaking, I am an indepedent that tends to lean conservative on fiscal issues and progressive on social issues. I try to remain as unbiased and open-minded as possible. Please email or post any comments, and especially criticisms. If something I say is wrong, or you disagree - let me know about it!



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