Friday, July 7, 2017

Second Circuit Decision on Class Actions

Today the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued its decision in In re Petrobras Securities. Among other things, the panel’s opinion addresses the role of “ascertainability” for class certification under FRCP 23:

“We take this opportunity to clarify the ascertainability doctrine’s substance and purpose. We conclude that a freestanding administrative feasibility requirement is neither compelled by precedent nor consistent with Rule 23, joining four of our sister circuits in declining to adopt such a requirement. The ascertainability doctrine that governs in this Circuit requires only that a class be defined using objective criteria that establish a membership with definite boundaries.”

Specifically, the Second Circuit rejected what it called “[t]he heightened ascertainability test, as articulated by the Third Circuit,” which “treats administrative feasibility as an absolute standard: plaintiffs must provide adequate ‘assurance that there can be a reliable and administratively feasible mechanism for determining whether putative class members fall within the class definition.’”

“We conclude that an implied administrative feasibility requirement would be inconsistent with the careful balance struck in Rule 23, which directs courts to weigh the competing interests inherent in any class certification decision.”

Download Petrobras (2d Cir)

 

 

 

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/civpro/2017/07/second-circuit-decision-on-class-actions.html

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