In a recent op-ed in the Washington Examiner, David Freddoso slams lawyers for bringing frivolous class action suits. The piece argues that some attorneys bring meritless class action suits against major corporations hoping that these companies will settle rather than face the higher cost of litigation. These settlements often contain large amounts of attorneys’ fees and little benefit to the class members. The article discusses a recent decision by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to reject such a settlement in the ongoing Motorola/Bluetooth class action.
The rejected settlement involves a class action suit brought against Motorola and other Bluetooth headset manufacturers for hearing loss damages. According to the article, the settlement included $800,000 in attorneys’ fees and almost nothing for the class members. The court rejected the settlement, sending it back to the District Court for reconsideration. This decision occurred after an objection was filed by Ted Frank of the Center for Class Action Fairness. Frank has objected to numerous other class action settlements including those involving suits against Kellogg, Volkswagen, Sirius XM Radio, and Toys “R” Us.
The Center for Class Action Fairness is a non-profit firm founded by Ted Frank. Frank established the Center after his successful objection to a class action settlement involving the makers of Grand Theft Auto. In that proposed settlement the plaintiffs were to receive roughly $30,000, while their attorneys received $1 million in fees. The Center for Class Action Fairness maintains a blog that details their various efforts to combat these practices.