TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Commonwealth Law School

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Aggregate Justice: Perspectives Ten Years After Amchem and Ortiz

2009 Kansas Law Review Symposium
Aggregate Justice: Perspectives Ten Years After Amchem and Ortiz

October 30, 2009
Green Hall, 1535 West 15th Street, Lawrence, Kansas 66045

This Symposium explores the state of aggregate justice one decade after the Supreme Court issued guidance on the boundaries and meaning of the federal class action rule in Amchem Prods. Inc. v. Windsor, 521 U.S. 591 (1997), and Ortiz v. Fibreboard Corp., 527 U.S. 815 (1999)While the complexities of mass litigation and the demand for aggregate solutions persist, the world hardly has remained static since those decisions:   Federal Rule 23 itself has been amended, Congress has enacted the Class Action Fairness Act and, most recently, the American Law Institute has promulgated its Principles of Aggregate Litigation.  And beyond those obvious game-changers lie more subtle trends and complications. 

The renowned set of speakers participating in the Symposium will reflect on the lingering impact of Amchem and Ortiz.  They will address timely and intriguing topics such as the ethical challenges inherent in mass settlements, the enduring vitality of the punitive damages class action, the empirical evidence of a shift from federal mass tort class actions to multidistrict litigation, the availability of collateral attack based on the adequacy of class representation, the impact of CAFA on state class actions, the disparities between federal and state class actions, and the very nature of cohesiveness in litigation.


Elizabeth Chamblee Burch, Assistant Professor of Law, Florida State University College of Law:  Aggregation, Community, and the Line Between”


Howard M. Erichson, Professor of Law, Fordham University School of Law: “The Trouble with Defendants’ Insistence on Comprehensive Settlements”


Steven S. Gensler, Welcome D. and W. DeVier Pierson Professor of Law, University of Oklahoma College of Law: “The Other CAFA Effect: State-Court Class Actions after the Resettlement Plan”


Laura J. Hines, Professor of Law, University of Kansas School of Law: “The State of State Class Actions”


Linda S. Mullenix, Rita and Morris Atlas Chair in Advocacy, University of Texas School of Law:  “Nine Lives: The Punitive Damage Class”


Tom Willging, Senior Researcher, Federal Judicial Center: “From Classes to Multidistrict Consolidations: Documenting Some Shifts in Aggregate Mass Tort Litigation after Ortiz


Patrick Woolley, Beck, Redden & Secrest Professor, University of Texas School of Law: "The ALI and the Adequate Representation Requirement”

Attendance is free and no reservations are required. CLE credit will be offered at this event pending approval.

For more information, please contact Symposium Editor Shane McCall:

You also can download a copy of the symposium brochure for more info.



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