Eversheds Sutherland 11th Circuit Business Blog
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Administrative Feasibility Not Separate Class Certification Requirement

The Eleventh Circuit aligned itself last week with the majority of circuits in holding that a threshold determination that identifying class members is administratively feasible is not a separate requirement for class certification. The ruling, in the closely-watched case of Cherry v. Dometic Corp., 2021 WL 346121 (11th Cir. Feb. 2, 2021), which attracted numerous amicus briefs,...

No Heightened Duty Owed to Class Representatives by Class Counsel

Counsel for a proposed class do not owe the named class representatives a heightened fiduciary duty relative to other class members. So held the Eleventh Circuit in Medical & Chiropractic Clinic, Inc. v. Oppenheim, 981 F.3d 983 (11th Cir. 2020), a decision which marked the court’s return to an unseemly controversy stemming from litigation against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers alleging...

End of Engle Cigarette Litigation in Eleventh Circuit?

Judge Kevin Newsom begins his opinion for the court in Harris v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., 2020 WL 6816965 (11th Cir. Nov. 20, 2020), with the auspicious observation that this Engle case is “one of the last that we’re likely to see.” Correct or not, the comment evokes the long history in the Eleventh Circuit of the progeny of the Florida Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Engle v....

Eleventh Circuit Bans Incentive Payments to Lead Plaintiffs in Class Actions

In what appears to be a first, the Eleventh Circuit recently held that federal law prohibits so-called “incentive payments” to class representatives, even as part of an agreed settlement. The court acknowledged that it was forging a new path in Johnson v. NPAS Solutions, LLC, 975 F.3d 1244, 1248–49 (11th Cir. 2020)—identifying errors that it said had “become commonplace in everyday...

Foundry Employees’ Action is a “Mass Action” Subject to Removal Under the Class Action Fairness Act

The Eleventh Circuit has clarified the scope of the “local event exception” to the federal-court jurisdiction over “mass actions” conferred by the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”), holding that claims by former foundry employees against manufacturers and distributors of products used at the foundry are not within the exception.  Spencer v. Specialty Foundry Prods. Inc., 2020 WL...

Eleventh Circuit Affirms Dismissal With Prejudice of Auto Shops’ RICO Complaint Against Insurers

The Eleventh Circuit has affirmed the dismissal with prejudice of a putative class action brought by auto body collision repair shops against dozens of insurers and alleging RICO violations, fraud, and unjust enrichment.  Crawford’s Auto Center, Inc. v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., 2019 WL 6974428 (Dec. 20, 2019). The plaintiffs alleged that the defendant insurers...

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