Eversheds Sutherland 11th Circuit Business Blog
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Eleventh Circuit Affirms Approval of (Almost) All of Equifax Data Breach Settlement

In In re: Equifax, Inc. Customer Data Sec. Breach Litig. (Huang v. Equifax, Inc.), 2021 WL 2250845 (11th Cir. June 3, 2021), the Eleventh Circuit upheld the district court’s approval of a class settlement arising out of the Equifax data breach – except for the incentive awards to the class representatives, as to which the court reversed the district court in light of Johnson v. NPAS...

STOLI Invalidation Upheld, Issues Certified to Delaware Supreme Court

STOLI – Stranger-Originated Life Insurance – was the subject of the court’s decision in Estate of Malkin v. Wells Fargo Bank, NA, 2021 Westlaw 2149344  (11th Cir. May 27, 2021). Judge Beverly Martin authored the court’s opinion, which affirmed a Florida district court’s invalidation of the life insurance policy at issue but certified questions relating to defenses and a counterclaim to...

Judge Beverly Martin to Resign on September 30, 2021

Judge Beverly Martin, an Obama appointee who also served as a judge in the Northern District of Georgia and as United States Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, has notified the White House that she intends to resign as a judge on the Eleventh Circuit effective September 30, 2021. Judge Martin is regarded as the court’s most consistently liberal member. She will not continue...

Court Upholds (Again) $20 Million Punitive-Damages Verdict Against Phillip Morris

In what may be one of the last Engle progeny cases to reach the Eleventh Circuit, the court again upheld an award of punitive damages against the tobacco company defendant, rejecting Phillip Morris’s argument that the award—which was over 3 times the amount of compensatory damages awarded to the individual plaintiff—was unconstitutionally excessive in violation of due process. Cote I...

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...

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