A “class action” means a lawsuit brought on behalf of a group of similarly situated people. Class Actions are most frequently used when the harm done to each individual class member is too small to warrant an individual lawsuit. This does not mean that the lawsuit is frivolous, though: if a major corporation steals a million dollars, $2 at a time, it has still stolen a million dollars.
Class actions can also be an effective method of handling the legal claims of people with larger or more serious injuries when the defendant’s conduct is uniform for all members of the class. For example, when a chain restaurant refuses to pay its employees overtime in violation of state law, the restaurant’s policy of non-payment is the same for everyone. Requiring every individual employee to bring their own lawsuit for their unpaid wages would be too time-consuming and inefficient for the court system. Instead, the law allows a small number of “representative plaintiffs” to bring the lawsuit on behalf of all the other employees.
We have extensive experience in class actions in state and federal courts across the country. If you believe that you have been harmed in a manner identical to others, please click here to contact one of our attorneys.