Class Actions 101: Does the Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act of 2017 Spell Doom for Class Actions as We Know Them?

On March 9, 2017, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 985—the Fairness in Class Action Litigation and Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency Act of 2017—by a vote of 220 to 201. The bill has been praised by business interests as a necessary check on abuses in class action litigation and derided by consumer advocates as a tool to destroy consumers’ ability to protect themselves against corporate abuses. Some are worried that the bill will destroy class action litigation altogether. In this edition of Class Actions 101, we explore some of the history of H.R. 985, the likelihood of its passage into law, and its potential impacts on class action litigation if enacted.

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Paul Karlsgodt is a partner at Baker Hostetler LLP in Denver, Colorado.

Copyright © 2017, American Bar Association. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or downloaded or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association. The views expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the positions or policies of the American Bar Association, the Section of Litigation, this committee, or the employer(s) of the author(s).


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