Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Erbsen on Wal-Mart

Hi Everyone!  For my inaugural post, I want to pay it forward and direct you to an excellent post by Allan Erbsen on Prawfsblawg discussing "Wal-Mart v. Dukes and the Heterogeneity Problem."  Come get a taste:

A central problem in all proposed or certified class actions involves identifying and coping with heterogeneity among the class.  At a high level of abstraction, classes often seem materially homogenous.  The carefully worded class definition might appear to encompass a group in which each member suffered an identical injury caused by the same actor in the same manner that creates equivalent entitlements to a remedy.  If scrutiny confirms that homogeneity is present, then class certification will generally be appropriate: the substantial economy of scale that collective adjudication of identical claims provides often justifies the cost and complications of group litigation.

The Heterogeneity Problem arises because substantive legal rules frequently require detailed inquiries that reduce the operational level of abstraction and expose differences between ostensibly homogenous class members.

Definitely worth reading.

SJC

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/mass_tort_litigation/2011/07/erbsen-on-wal-mart.html

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