WTK Connect Details

Could Sweeping Class Action Litigation Reform Become A Reality?

Mar 31, 2017 | Posted by Robert K. Dixon | Topic: Class Actions

The Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act of 2017 (“H.R. 985” or the “Act”) proposes comprehensive class action litigation reform.  For instance, H.R. 985 requires (1) more stringent “typicality” requirements for class members, as the party seeking class certification must affirmatively demonstrate that each proposed class member suffered the same type and scope of injury as the named class representative, (2) additional requirements on fees to class counsel, including limiting fee awards to a reasonable percentage of payments actually distributed and received by class members, (3) distribution fees to class counsel, among other changes. 

The House of Representatives has already passed H.R. 985 and it was referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary.  However, the Act will have to overcome many obstacles in order to become a law.  Indeed, PredictGov gives the Act an enactment predication of 21% and the American Bar Association and other groups oppose the Act. 

However, given the rise of the non-traditional injury class action and large attorney fee awards associated with the same, the time is ripe for class action litigation reform. 

We will keep you advised of any further developments.