Touhy Touhy & Buehler LLP

Class & Collective Actions

A class action is a lawsuit in which one or a few individuals represent a large group of individuals with similar claims. There are four basic requirements for a class action:
  1. Numerosity. The class must be so large that joining all the members in the case would be impracticable (usually this means more than 40).
  2. Commonality. The class must have claims that are based on similar facts and legal theories. Usually, these similarities must also predominate over any differences in class members’ claims.
  3. Typicality. The representative plaintiff or plaintiffs’ claims must be typical of the other class members’ claims.
  4. Adequacy. The representative plaintiff or plaintiffs’ interests must be aligned with the other class members’ interests and must be represented by attorneys who are capable of managing a class action.
A collective action is similar to class action but is used in specific kinds of employment disputes and has several significant differences. The most important difference is that members must join or “opt-in” to a collective action by filing a written consent form in the court in which the action is pending. Because members must take affirmative action to join a collective action, the statute of limitations runs on each member’s claims until the written consent form is filed.

Class and collective actions spread the cost of litigation among many people and conserve judicial resources by allowing many claims to be adjudicated in a single proceeding. Class and collective actions also provide a remedy when many people have small claims that would otherwise be too expensive to litigate.

We represent individuals and classes of individuals from across the nation in class and collective actions involving employment disputes, consumer fraud and deceptive business practices, dangerous and defective products and dangerous drugs.
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