Class Action Claims
Class Action claims are unlike individual claims in that they offer a way for individuals to join together to pursue their claims more efficiently.
In a class action, at least one individual agrees to represent the “class” and serve as the class representative. Class actions must be approved by the court. Once this is done, the individual (or individuals) representing the class proceeds on behalf of the other members of the class action.
General Procedures for N.C. Class Actions
There are procedures to follow to file a class action suit. The class must be certified and the court must find:
- The class action claim is the best way to pursue the claim
- The claim or claims brought by the class representative are typical of the class as a whole
- The large number of plaintiffs make it difficult to have individual actions. The lawyers and the class representative are deemed to best represent the interests of the entire class
- The damages must be able to be calculated in a formula
Benefits of Class Action Over Individual Filings
A class action can offer benefits in cases where the harms are the same or very similar for each individual. It offers:
- Strength in numbers
- Resource and expense sharing
- The lead plaintiff (the class representative) is the only plaintiff who works with the class action attorney (vs. everyone involved in the suit)
North Carolina Class Action Lawyers Offer FREE Case Evaluation
If you have been wronged in a manner that you believe affects more people than you, contact us for a FREE case evaluation of whether a class action is possible.
Because class action cases are often heard in other states or federal courts, our James Scott Farrin class action lawsuit attorneys work closely with other law firms across the nation to help try to make sure clients have the legal representation they deserve.
Contact us today or call 1-866-900-7078.
Examples of Class Action Claims
Dangerous Drugs and Medical Devices
New drugs and medical devices are often marketed with the promise to help heal and sometimes even save lives. Yet all too often the benefits of some of these drugs and devices can be overshadowed by debilitating and even deadly side effects. Side effects that may have gone unreported to the FDA, medical professionals, or the public. Sometimes the effects may have gone unreported for decades as was the case with Johnson & Johnson’s Talcum powder and its link to ovarian cancer.
Consumers can join forces in filing a single claim against companies that overcharge for services, make misleading claims about their products, or sell defective goods.
Recalls and Announcements
Companies may announce recalls after their mistakes and attempted cover ups were outed. Notable cases include Takata airbags, the GM ignition switch recall, the BP oil spill, Fiat Chrysler emissions recall, and many others.
Most recently in North Carolina, the government finally agreed to pay veterans who had been stationed at Camp Lejune for having to use contaminated drinking water from 1953 to 1987. Now, there’s a similar alleged issue in the Cape Fear River where DuPont’s chemical toxin GenX has been found in N.C. tap water at least 100 miles downstream, including the City of Wilmington.
Securities Class Action
Securities class action lawsuits are brought by investors who have bought or sold a company’s securities and suffered financial harm as a result of securities law violations on the part of the financial advisor, stock broker, or other securities representative. Think Bernie Madoff and his $65 billion bilking of thousands of investors over several decades.
Insurance-Related Class Action
Insurance policyholders have pursued claims against property, title, auto, life, and casualty insurance companies challenging the manner in which products were sold to them and how the company handled policyholder claims.
Environmental Disaster Class Action
In an environmental class action, a large number of people who suffered similar harms band together to sue a company that caused their exposure to an environmental hazard or toxin. Erin Brockovich, the movie, was based on a class action lawsuit whereby California residents who drank groundwater tainted with toxic chemicals dumped by Pacific Gas and Electric, sued the company for $333 million dollars.
A wide-spread and growing class action is over Mesothelioma claims. Marty Kanarek, an environmental epidemiologist and professor of population health sciences and environmental studies at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, suggests asbestos is the No. 1 occupational killer in the world and referred to it as "the most frightening thing in environmental epidemiology."
In his professional opinion, "This epidemic of mesothelioma is going to go on and on, unfortunately," he said. "After all is said and done, by 2075, the estimates are that 10 million people in the world will have died because of asbestos."