Class Action and Opt-Out Practice

Class action lawsuits pose a huge potential liability for defendant companies and are largely governed by procedures that can differ from the typical commercial business civil action. So mounting a strong and effective defense to class action cases is paramount. Class actions that allege antitrust violations can result in a defendant's having to pay both treble damages and the class's litigation expenses.

In our defense of class actions, depending upon the factual and legal circumstances of the particular case, we first assess the likelihood that the Court could dismiss the complaint or deny class certification. If such a course fits our overall strategy, we will move the Court for such relief. If those procedural efforts are unsuccessful, we will participate in discovery with an eye to seeking similar dispositive relief though a pre-trial motion for summary judgment, which, if successful, will avoid a jury trial. If summary judgment is denied and the case goes to trial, we have considerable trial experience in the area of complex litigation and are well prepared to try the case.

We are also mindful that not every case warrants such herculean procedural efforts (whose cost may not be justified). Thus if the facts and law are significantly unfavorable, we responsibly assess the litigation risks and, in appropriate cases, seek authority to negotiate a settlement on terms that are most favorable to our clients. Oftentimes an early settlement can be obtained at an amount that is less than the cost of litigation. A settlement also eliminates all litigation risks.

We have experience defending corporations against class action lawsuits involving alleged violations of the antitrust laws. In defending those cases, we draw on our general procedural experience along with specific knowledge gained from our years of defending antitrust cases to provide the legal representation necessary to manage all risks involved.

On the plaintiffs' side, an aggrieved class can efficiently achieve redress for monetary injury through either a class action or, in the right circumstances, an opt-out class action in which otherwise qualified class members decide to form their own separate class to achieve a result that may address certain needs or be handled on more favorable terms than the main class. We have successfully represented clients that elected to “opt-out” of class action lawsuits, choosing instead to proceed with separate litigation, the most notable case being the Vitamins Antitrust class action filed in Washington, D.C.

Office Address:

690 S. Ponce Ct., NE
Atlanta, GA 30307-1667
Phone: 404-667-0714
Fax: 404-529-4193
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