When the words “class-action lawsuit” get tossed around, consumers are often met with an image of a check in the mail for pennies, if they ever expect to receive a share at all. A class action lawsuit is a lawsuit in which a group of people with the same or similar injuries caused by the same product or action file suit against the defendant as a group. Other names for class action lawsuits include “mass tort litigation” or “multi-district litigation” (MDL).
Benefits of a Class Action Lawsuit
A class action lawsuit is efficient because it collects and disposes of a large number of claims at one time whose injuries are not costly enough to support a lawsuit on their own. The judge hears from both sides, the plaintiff and defendant, then decides who wins for the entire group. If the class of plaintiffs wins, the judge decides the amount of recovery, which is divided among the individuals.
Also, filing as a class allows for the consolidation of attorneys, evidence, witnesses, and other aspects of litigation which lowers the cost of the lawsuit overall.
When done right, class-action lawsuits can provide sweeping justice to classes of millions of individuals, force corporations to take responsibility, spur accountability projects and research, and bring brighter futures through systemic change.
Examples of class action lawsuits include:
- A group of employees subjected to discrimination,
- A group of patients who were prescribed the same drug causing injurious side effects,
- A neighborhood of residents whose homes or families were injured by a toxic spill,
- Consumers who purchased a defective product, or
- Investors who lost their savings due to securities fraud.
Losing a Class Action Lawsuit
In most cases, you are not the one who actually filed the lawsuit; so, technically, you can’t lose a class action.
If the case, however, is dismissed or a jury rules in favor of the defendant, both the person who filed the suit and the class members will not be entitled to any settlement money.
Furthermore, while you cannot “get in trouble” for participating in a class action, even one that is unsuccessful, you may be prevented from filing another lawsuit involving the same allegations. Essentially, the legal system has already given you – and potentially thousands of others – a chance to recover compensation, and, for whatever reason, decided that the claims alleged in the class action did not have merit or should not be resolved in consumers’ favor.
Class Action Grievances
In a unionized workplace, a grievance is a complaint filed by an employee against an employer alleging that the employer broke an obligation outlined under a collective bargaining agreement. A collective bargaining agreement is the contract that governs the terms of conditions of employment for unionized workers. A class action grievance is a complaint alleging violations of a collective bargaining agreement that affect a large group of unionized employees. Most collective bargaining agreements require that class action grievances must be submitted to an arbitrator for adjudication.
Class Action Lawyers
At Arizona Attorney Lawyers, our attorneys are experienced in handling class action lawsuits in order to maximize the compensation victims receive. It is unfair what has happened to you and your loved ones, and the party at fault needs to be held accountable. Joining a class action lawsuit can help you fight for your rights.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of a dangerous drug or defective product, Arizona Attorney Lawyers will help you determine your legal options.