The United States has developed unique procedures for dealing with multiple parties possessing the same or similar claims against the same defendant, which claims often involve multiple jurisdictions.
This course provides an overview of class action litigation in the United States, with a focus on the Federal Rule 23. The course introduces fundamentals of class actions, including: development of class based lawsuits; class certification requirements (implicit requirements, numerosity, commonality, typicality, adequacy); the Rule 23(b) categories and requirements; problems and strategic considerations in litigating class actions (from the plaintiffs' and defendants’ perspectives); constitutional issues, class action discovery; dispositive motions; trial structure; class notice; communications with class members; jurisdictional issues; settlement; attorneys’ fees; and appellate review of class action orders. The course also introduces the requirements of the 2005 Class Action Fairness Act. Students are asked to consider the challenges and policy considerations in such multi-party litigations, and to analyze recent cases and related fact patterns.