Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Inquiry into the Merits at the Class Certification Stage

You might want to give In re New Motor Vehicles Canadian Export Antitrust Litigation a read. The First Circuit discusses the degree of inquiry into the merits that is required at the class certification stage. The Supreme Court has yet to rule on the issue and there is currently a split between the circuits. Here, the First Circuit held that when a Rule 23 requirement relies on a novel or complex theory as to injury, the district court must engage in a searching inquiry into the viability of that theory and the existence of the facts necessary for the theory to succeed. The Federal Civil Practice Bulletin has pulled some of the more significant passages from the case, but if you want to read the entire opinion here is a link. --Counseller/md


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