Posts in Class Actions.

Examines Seventh Circuit’s recent clarification of home-state controversy and internal-affairs exceptions to federal court jurisdiction under CAFA.


In a recent decision, the Northern District of Illinois held the U.S. Supreme Court’s seminal decision in Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court of California, 137 S. Ct. 1773 (2017) applied to jurisdiction determinations in class actions. In so holding, the court in DeBernardis v. NBTY, Inc. No. 1:17-cv-06125 (N.D. Ill. Jan. 18, 2018) placed itself squarely on one side of a circuit split that should have forum-shopping plaintiffs concerned.

In August 2017, DeBernardis, an Illinois resident, filed his putative class action against two New York dietary supplement companies ...


Today the U.S. Supreme Court denied a cert petition in a matter aimed at resolving whether a plaintiff who alleges a substantial risk of harm in the future has standing under Article III of the Constitution. A ruling in the case, CareFirst v. Attias, would have had major implications for data-breach litigation and in class actions generally.

A quick refresher on standing. To satisfy Article III’s standing requirements, a plaintiff must show (1) he has suffered an “injury in fact” that is (a) concrete and particularized and (b) actual or imminent, not conjectural or ...


A Meaningful Class Action Defense Tool?

On May 16, 2016 the High Court finally spoke on Spokeo, the long anticipated case involving what injury is necessary to sustain Article III standing in federal court.  Some predicted a blow to consumer protection and privacy related class actions in which neither the class representative nor the class as a whole suffered anything but a technical federal statutory violation without real harm.

In the underlying case, Thomas Robins claimed that Spokeo published false information about him on its search engine site, in violation of his rights under ...

Tags: TCPA

Class Certification of TCPA Claims in Sandusky Wellness Center, LLC v. MedTox Scientific, Inc.

Alexander Bain, a Scotsman, worked on an experimental fax machine in the 1840’s, synchronizing the movement of two pendulums through a clock to scan messages on a line by line basis. Bain’s work resulted in a patent issued May 27, 1843 for “improvements in producing and regulating electric currents and improvements in timepieces, and in electric printing, and signal telegraphs.”  The rudimentary fax machine preceded Alexander Graham Bell’s invention of the telephone.  Who ...


Panera Bread Company is, quite obviously, in the bread business. But when Mark Boswell and others filed a class action against the company for breach of contract and fraud, the case was about a different kind of dough.

Boswell and the other named plaintiffs had served as Joint Venture General Managers for Panera, managing the daily operations of company-owned cafés. Boswell v. Panera Bread Company, No. 4:14-CV-01833 AGF, 2015 WL 6445396, at *1 (E.D. Mo. Oct. 23, 2015).  Panera entered into a standard Employment Agreement with Boswell and other Joint Venture GMs. Id. Under the ...


On April 9, 2014, the Seventh Circuit issued its opinion in Johnson v. Pushpin Holdings, LLC, No. 14-8006 (7th Cir. April 9, 2014). In Pushpin, the Seventh Circuit held that before a class is certified, a statement by the named plaintiff in the complaint does not limit the amount of potential damages that the class would be able to recover and, therefore, that named plaintiff could not thereby avoid removal under the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”) by indicating that the complaint sought less than $5 million. In so ruling, the Seventh Circuit followed the binding precedent set by ...


On March 18, 2014, District Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh, Jr. issued a Memorandum and Order dismissing the former Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Patriot Coal Corporation in a stock drop securities class action filed in the Eastern District of Missouri.   Glenn E. Davis, Partner in HeplerBroom LLC’s St. Louis office assisted Sidley Austin LLP with the decisive analysis and briefing under the Securities Exchange Act and Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (“PSLRA”).

The Court found that the defendants lacked scienter to sustain federal securities ...


Supreme Court Refuses to Review Consumer Appliance Defect Class Actions

Critics of the Supreme Court as consistently “pro-business” welcomed the Court’s February 24, 2014 order denying certiorari in a series of consumer class action cases alleging defects in millions of front loading washing machines.  A pair of recent Sixth Circuit and Seventh Circuit decisions, and a 2012 Ninth Circuit decision permitted the class actions to proceed, notwithstanding the Supreme Court’s recent Comcast decision, over the objections of Whirlpool Corp., Sears Holdings Corp., and a unit ...


Stratus Building Solutions faced a business challenge on a bet the company scale.  Despite winning many franchise awards, five franchisees charged that its entire system imposed a fraud on franchisees.   The plaintiffs sued 179 defendants, including the system franchisor, master (regional) franchisors, and over 70 individuals associated with the franchise system of violating §§ 1962(c) & (d) of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”).  They claim the Defendants collectively operate the Stratus franchise system through a massive, but vaguely ...


In Parko, et al. v. Shell Oil Co. et al., Nos. 13-8023 & 8024 (7th Cir. Jan. 17, 2014), Judge Posner of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit recently reversed an order from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois granting class certification to a group of plaintiffs who alleged that an industrial site leaked benzene and other contaminants into the groundwater under the proposed class members’ properties, thereby damaging the value of these properties.  Judge Posner distinguished the case from an opinion he authored in Mejdrech v ...

Search Blog




Kerri Forsythe

Jump to Page

This website uses cookies to analyze site usage and to store information about a visitors' session. These cookies allow us to distinguish you from other visitors of our website. We use these cookies purely for analytical purposes and for our own statistical research into the success of our website.

We Encourage You To View Our PRIVACY STATEMENT