While class actions are intended to promote important goals such as efficiency, consistency, and an opportunity for consumer redress, the class action mechanism has become rife with abuse. Because the threat of class certification presents potentially ruinous liability for many defendants, class actions are often misused to extract large settlements from litigation-weary defendants, regardless of the merits of the claim. Often such settlements result in millions of dollars in attorney fees, with mere dollars—or pennies—for individual class members.
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