You often hear of class actions lawsuits in television or newspapers involving a faulty or defective product. But these types of cases are pretty commonplace in the real world. For instance, you and your colleagues were wrongfully terminated in California; you can hire West Coast Employment lawyers to handle your case. A class action lawyer, on top of being an employment attorney, would be best suited because of their expertise and experience.
Class action lawsuits permit a large group of people referred to as the plaintiffs to sue a defendant for damages. These damages or injuries caused by the defendant’s actions or none actions are similar in nature and bear similar consequences. These types of lawsuits have the capacity of involving thousands of claims that share the same nature. When you think about it, it would be very impractical, time-consuming, and costly to litigate each case as a separate individual one.
Characteristics of this Class Cases
Not every form of litigation is automatically appropriate for class actions. There are several parameters that must be met in order to it be considered a class action suit. These are:
- Numerosity: Claims need to be similar, though not necessarily identical so that it is more practical for one lawsuit to resolve the issues that numerous lawsuits.
- Similar Facts or Commonality in Questions of Law: Since the claims are similar in nature, they also possess similar facts and details. They shall be requesting the court to address similar questions of the law so claims can be handled together.
- Adequacy: Some plaintiffs will be named as case representatives, meaning they will represent everyone in a fair manner. This representative is not allowed to take advantage of the situation.
- Common Claims: All three elements must be satisfied to certify the plaintiffs as a group of complainants.
To illustrate, a company sold X computer to hundreds of people. Unfortunately, this model is defective causing the battery to overhead. Fires were started and some suffered an electric shock. The victims of X computer can band together to file a case against the manufacturing company. A class action lawsuit has several advantages for the plaintiffs who decide to pursue and litigate as a group. Here are some of the perks of joining a class action lawsuit:
Lowers Litigation Costs
Filing this type of lawsuit lowers the costs because the expense is divided amongst the many different members who are filing the case. This is actually a more viable option of suing for plaintiffs. In addition to that, these types of court cases are typically handled on what is called a contingency fee basis. The meaning of this is the plaintiffs do not pay any amount of legal fees unless the case has been won. Because the chances of winning a case like this are strong, lawyers are paid when the damages have been shelled out by the company. For instance, West Coast Employment lawyers that you and your colleagues hire for wrongful termination will receive their professional fees after your employer has given money to pay for damages as mandated by the court.
This type of suit handled by a class action lawyer is decided in one courtroom and presided by one judge. Having one head to analyze over all the details is advantageous in this instance because numerous plaintiffs mean more evidence collated and a stronger set of proof, which can all be used to prove and win the case. These types of mass suits serve to be more efficient and easier for the courts to hear. Listening to one case as opposed to listening to a hundred of similar cases will take so much more time. This is counter-productive because the decision of the judge will take much longer to come out and damage payout will take longer too. One mass claim will be much faster than numerous claims filed at different times.
More Certainty of Winning
There is one settlement approach in class action cases and also one judge. The plaintiffs have a better chance of recovering what is due them because details are more consistent. In fact, there is greater certainty for plaintiffs in mass lawsuits like this because many similarly-situated victims are fighting for the same cause. For instance, hiring an employment attorney who is experienced in handling mass cases will prove to be more beneficial in pursuing your wrongful termination charges with your co-employees against your employers. There is, after all, always strength in numbers.
Given the Opportunity to Litigate
Not all of these types of lawsuits will lead to thousands of dollars in compensation. Sometimes, it can just mane a few extra hundred dollars in your pocket. But money is still money no matter the amount. The good thing about pursuing a mass case like this is that cost is defrayed between numerous people. Litigation is not cheap and can cost thousands of dollars. Going to a company alone will be too expensive for one person. However, sharing the expense makes it possible to go after an errant company. The opportunity to litigate is permitted when a case like this is handled collectively.
Greater Degree of Uniformity
The key word to this kind of lawsuit is similar. Take note, it does not have to be identical to be considered as a part of a class action suit. Similarly-situated victims can recover in a uniform manner, which totally makes sense because they did go through somewhat of a similar experience. Even defendants can benefit from this type of lawsuit because they can more or less resolve numerous transgressions in one single courtroom.
Higher Likelihood of Financial Recovery
Individual cases operate on a first come, first served basis. Thus, those who filed a claim earlier can get their money faster. Unfortunately, the company can claim for bankruptcy. This mass lawsuit eliminates this mentality and allows all the injured parties to seek retribution at the same time. Having an equal chance to vie for recovery for all is only fair and just.
More Experience Legal Representation
Handling a mass lawsuit is not an easy task at all for a lawyer. This translates to numerous testimonies, thousands of pages of documentation, expensive witness fees, and large amounts of time to fine-tune the details of the pleadings. A case like this can only be confidently handled by a competent lawyer who has a background in litigating class action cases in the past. Going this route allows the plaintiffs to have the solid representation they would not have had if they had decided to pursue their claims individually.
If you find yourself embroiled in a similar situation like this, do not take matters into your own hands. Even common legal matters that seem so simple are actually complex matters pertaining to the letter of the law. Facing it alone will undoubtedly be stressful. It is important for you to find a qualified and trustworthy lawyer who is adept in handling class action cases. He or she will address your specific legal needs, explain the details of the law, and represent you and your companions in the courtroom. Discussing your specific legal situation should be done swiftly because taking your sweet time will only serve to jeopardize the case.