This blog recently covered a decision from the Northern District of California denying a defendant’s motion for summary judgment on a plaintiff’s “greenwashing” claims, which asserted that defendant’s “non-toxic” and “Earth-friendly” labels were false and misleading. See Bush v. Rust-Oleum Corp., 2024 WL 308263 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 26, 2024). Now, the same court has granted class certification on those claims, demonstrating that not only can these claims be difficult to defeat before trial, but it can also be difficult to prevent certification on those claims as well.Continue Reading “Greenwashing” Claims Certified For Class Treatment
The Sixth Circuit vacated an order certifying five statewide classes alleging a common brake defect in Ford Motor Company’s F-150 pickup trucks, remanding the case to the district court “for more searching consideration” of whether commonality under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(a)(2) was satisfied.
In Weidman v. Ford Motor Co., 2022 WL 1071289 (E.D. Mich. Apr. 8, 2022), plaintiffs had filed a putative class action against Ford over an alleged defective brake cylinder in their F-150 pickup trucks. The district court certified five statewide classes on three issues under Rule 23(c)(4): (1) whether the trucks’ brake systems were defective; (2) whether Ford possessed pre-sale knowledge of the defect; and (3) whether concealed information about the defect would be material to a reasonable buyer.
On a Rule 23(f) petition for interlocutory review, the Sixth Circuit vacated the class certification order, finding that the district court’s “cursory treatment of commonality, one of the four necessary class action ingredients, failed to meet Rule 23’s stringent requirements.” In Re Ford Motor Co., 2023 WL 7877971, at *1 (6th Cir. Nov. 16, 2023).Continue Reading Sixth Circuit Pumps the Brakes on Class Certification Alleging Common Defects in Ford F-150 Pickup Trucks
The Tenth Circuit recently affirmed an order denying class certification, in an unpublished decision holding that district courts may rely on out-of-circuit precedent in deciding whether a proposed class is ascertainable.Continue Reading Tenth Circuit Permits District Courts to Rely on Third and Seventh Circuit Ascertainability Precedent
The Ninth Circuit recently held that a class could be certified with class members who lost less than a penny of interest. But it also held that where some class members may have lost nothing at all, the district court must take a hard look at whether the predominance requirement has been met. Continue Reading Losing Less than a Penny Suffices for Standing for Class Certification, the Ninth Circuit Rules
When a class action is filed, defendants often wonder whether tendering a payment to a class representative can defeat the claims. In a recent decision, the Third Circuit held that a mid-litigation payment to a class representative plaintiff does not moot her claim if the check is not cashed. Duncan v. Governor of the Virgin Islands, — F.4th —-, 2022 WL 3906213 (3d Cir. Aug. 31, 2022). But tendering the payment, even if the check is uncashed and even if the plaintiff claims the payment does not cover the full value of her claim, did make the plaintiff an atypical class representative and provided a basis to defeat certification of a damages class.Continue Reading Post-Litigation Refund Check Does Not Moot Class Representative’s Damages Claim, but It Does Defeat Class Certification
The Fifth Circuit reversed a class certification order for claims under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) because the plaintiff lacked Article III standing. Perez v. McCreary, Veselka, Bragg & Allen, P.C., No. 21-50958, 2022 WL 3355249 (5th Cir. Aug. 15, 2022). The Court held that merely sending a letter to collect a time-barred debt, although a violation of the FDCPA, does not satisfy Article III’s injury-in-fact requirement.Continue Reading Fifth Circuit Applies TransUnion To Conclude Plaintiff Lacked Standing To Assert FDCPA Claims.