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American Bar Association

Class Actions & Derivative Suits
Mission

The Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committee is one of the 40 practice groups open to all members of the American Bar Association’s Section of Litigation. Joining the committee entitles a member to a number of benefits (see list below). The committee consists of practitioners, corporate counsel, and academicians interested in class actions and stockholder derivative suits. Its leadership of top practitioners works to keep members abreast of issues in the class actions area.


To accomplish this goal, the committee provides its members with these benefits:


  • CADS newsletter, a quarterly publication

  • the renowned annual National Class Action Institute

  • the Survey of Class Action Law

  • networking opportunities with leading practitioners

  • discounted CLE programs

  • online access to our case notes archive

  • opportunities to write for committee publications, speak on committee panels, and participate in the activities of our subcommittees


Whether you want to receive our newsletter, learn from and network with top litigators, or contribute to our programs and publications, or all of the above, join us. Section of Litigation members may join up to three committees at no charge.


To join, you must first be a member of the ABA and also a member of the ABA Section of Litigation.

 

 
Announcements

CADS' Events at the Section of Litigation Annual Conference

Chicago, Illinois
April 13-15, 2016

CADS’ “Dutch Treat” Dinner
7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 13, 2016

If you will be attending the Section of Litigation Annual Conference in Chicago, please join your fellow CADS members for dinner at Jellyfish (website link here), at 7:30 p.m. on April 13. The dinner will be immediately following the Welcome Reception, which begins at 5:30 p.m. Expect great food and a great opportunity to get to know your fellow CADS members in an informal and non-adversarial setting. We hope you can join us!


All CADS members are invited to our dinner, so space is limited. Please RSVP to our Social Chair, Erin Wilson, at wilsonem@lanepowell.com and also tell her if you will be bringing a guest. To secure a seat for this dinner, you must RSVP and receive confirmation from Erin.


Help CADS at “the Expo”
4:30-6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 14, 2016

Each year, the Section holds a themed “Expo,” where Section members can learn about various Committees by speaking directly with Committee members. Erin Wilson is preparing CADS’ presentation for our table based on the “Do You Know” theme, but is unable to attend SAC this year. We need 2-5 people to be the face of CADS at our table. This project only requires a two-hour commitment, but can get you brownie points within CADS by helping out. If you’re attending SAC and enjoy speaking with people in a casual one-on-one setting, please volunteer to help at the Expo. The Section also gives awards to the best tables (most interactive, most educational, etc.), so you may even get some bragging rights.


CADS Networking Lunch
12:15–1:15 p.m. on Friday, April 15, 2016

CADS will hold a networking lunch on Friday. This is a wonderful opportunity to meet other CADS members, other class action practioners, and learn more about what CADS has planned for the year and offer your own suggestions. Please sign up for this lunch when you register for the conference.


Class Action-Related Programing at the Section of Litigation Annual Conference
Thursday, April 14, 2016
“Is this CAFA or Kafka: Multi-state Actions in a Time of Metamorphosis” (9:45–10:45 a.m.)

Multi-state class and mass actions present many difficult strategic choices, which can dramatically alter leverage and cost parties tens of millions of dollars. The MDL Panel and CAFA are key parts of these decisions. Our three-act play pulls back the curtain on these choices by both plaintiff and defendant.


“Seven Wonders of the Class-Action World: Tour the Changing Rule 23 Landscape” (11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.)

The Supreme Court decides three class-action cases this term. Meanwhile, big changes to Rule 23 are afoot. We’ll explore what’s new in email notice, mootness, class definitions, “no injury” classes, and tougher standards for class settlements. Be sure to bring your own questions for the panel, which includes Federal Judge Ruben Castillo.


“Trying a Class Action” (3:15–4:15 p.m.)

Class actions rarely go to trial, mainly due to the settlement pressures that come with class certification. But when they do go to trial, they offer unique lessons for any litigator. Hear first-hand from those who have tried class actions on the challenges these trial present.


Friday, April 15, 2016
“Jack vs. the Giant: Keeping Reins on a Case with Disproportionate Burdens” (1:30–2:30 p.m.)

Everyone loves an underdog. But what happens when your client is the big guy? This program discusses common pitfalls experienced by litigators whose clients bear a disproportionate burden in discovery and settlement demands, and strategies for keeping those demands in check. Among the discussion points will be a focus on arguments for proportionality, emphasizing the newly amended Federal Rules of Civil Procedures.


We look forward to seeing you all in Chicago.


Kathryn Honecker and Jennifer Bechet
CADS Co-Chairs


Deep Dive into the 2015 "Proportionality" Rules Amendments

We want to bring to your attention and encourage you to attend a ground-breaking program that the ABA Section of Litigation, in cooperation with Duke Law School, is taking to 13 cities over the next six months. The programs, participants, and schedule are explained fully at www.federalrulesamendments.org.


The program is entitled "Hello 'Proportionality,' Goodbye 'Reasonably Calculated': Reinventing Case Management and Discovery Under the 2015 Civil Rules Amendments."


These may not be the only programs you hear about addressing the Dec. 1, 2015 Amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.  But they combine national thought leaders with local practices—four local judges and magistrate judges, plus plaintiffs and defense counsel—in each venue.  They also uniquely focus on the new "proportionality" regime for discovery and how it interacts with the case management aspects of the Amendments, with candid bench/bar discussions of how their implementation can change our practice.


More information and registration is available at www.federalrulesamendments.org


We hope you will consider attending.


Kathryn Honecker & Jennifer Bechet
Co-Chairs, Class Actions & Derivative Suits Committee


Record a Sound Advice Podcast!

Do you enjoy teaching others about a topic but are short on time? If so, we have the perfect opportunity for you.


CADS’ Sound Advice Subcommittee needs members like you to prepare a short (8-12 minute) audio recording on a topic of your choice that relates to class actions or derivative suits.  Sound Advice programs are audio-only podcasts that can be recorded using a smart phone. The goal is to provide short, informal “presentations” either in an interview format or with one individual presenting on the topic, so you do not need to prepare any slides or written materials. 


Sound Advice is a great way to not only help your fellow practitioners but also to gain exposure as a knowledgeable practitioner in the class action and derivative suits arena.  Check out some of the recordings currently in our Sound Advice Library.  


If you are interested in preparing a Sound Advice podcast or would like more information, please contact CADS' Sound Advice Subcommittee Chair, Joel Neckers, at neckers@wtotrial.com.


CADS Members Interested in Writing

Are you interested in publishing an article that will be read by the leading class action practitioners in the United States and Canada? Then the ABA Section of Litigation Class Actions & Derivative Suits Committee has just the right forum for you.


We are looking for authors to write a Class Actions 101 article set forth in a Q&A format helpful information on topics for the young class action attorney. If you are interested in writing an article, or know someone who might be, please contact one of our newsletter editors: 


Robert Herrington—herringtonr@gtlaw.com
Ben Seessel—bvs@jordenusa.com
Matthew Stein—matthew.stein@skadden.com
Tarifa Laddon—tarifa.laddon@nortonrosefulbright.com


A Brief Guide to Removal

Removing a case to federal court is a technical and detail-oriented process. It can sometimes be difficult to determine the proper approach, given various interconnected and interrelated statutes governing federal jurisdiction and removal. Matthew M.K. Stein and Abra C. Bron have provided a brief guide to those statutes and related interpretative case law, incorporating the Federal Courts Jurisdiction & Venue Clarifications Act of 2011, which applies to actions commenced after January 6, 2012.



CADS Committee Updates Survey of State Law

The Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committee recently published its updated state law class action survey. The book is an excellent tool for in-house and outside counsel who litigate class actions in state forums. The summaries are prepared by litigators from each of the respective states and address changes in rules and statutes, as well as significant case law.


Members can download past surveys from the Survey of State Class Action Law page.


Attention Young Lawyers

Our Committee is seeking to serve young lawyers and recruit them as members. You may find articles directed at young lawyers and the basics of class actions on the articles page. You may also contact our chairs, Kathryn Honecker and Jennifer Bechet, to become involved in our Committee immediately.


 
Message from the Chairs

Welcome to the Class Actions & Derivative Suits Committee! This is a vibrant group of connected litigators that are involved in the rapidly changing arena of class actions and derivative suits. Over 1,600 strong, the committee consists of numerous plaintiff and defense bar practitioners, corporate counsel, and academicians interested in class actions and shareholder derivative suits. Its leadership of top practitioners works to keep members abreast of emerging issues and developments in the class actions area including, without limitation, the following practice areas: consumer, employment, securities, anti-trust, pharmaceuticals and health law, international and mass torts.


The Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committee is open to all members of the American Bar Association’s Section of Litigation.  If you are already a member of the Section of Litigation, joining our committee is simple and easy (and free).  If you are not a member of the Section of Litigation, we invite you to join and become an active part of CADS; membership definitely has its benefits:


  • CADS newsletter, a quarterly publication

  • the renowned annual National Class Action Institute

  • listserv e-blasts with short summaries of key developments in the class actions area

  • membership in CADS' LinkedIn group, where members can post comments and questions on emerging class action issues

  • the Survey of Class Action Law

  • networking opportunities with leading practitioners

  • discounted CLE programs

  • access to our case notes archive

  • past issues of CADS Report and other helpful information

  • opportunities to write for committee publications, speak on committee panels, and participate in the activities of our subcommittees


Whether you want to receive CADS Report, learn from and network with top litigators, or contribute to our programs and publications, or all of the above, join us. Section of Litigation members may join up to three committees at no charge.


To join, you must first be a member of the ABA and also a member of the ABA Section of Litigation.


Kathryn Honecker—khonecker@roselawgroup.com
Jennifer Bechet—Jennifer.Bechet@walmartlegal.com


Chairs, Class Actions & Derivative Suits Committee


Minutes from 2015–2016 Committee Meetings



 
Subcommittees

Our active subcommittees include:

• Antitrust Law
• Consumer Law
• Derivative Suits
• Employment Law
• International Class Actions
• Mass Torts
• Membership


 

• Newsletter
• Pharmaceutical & Health Law
• Programs
• Rule 23
• Securities Law
• State Law
• Website Editors


 

Find contact information for committee and subcommittee chairs:

 
Navigant Partners

Sumon Mazumdar

Denver, CO


Sonya Kwon

Los Angeles, CA

 
 

Class Actions & Derivative Suits Leadership
Cochairs Web Editors Newsletter Editors

Kathryn A. Honecker

Scottsdale, AZ


Jennifer Bechet

Bentonville, AR


Ethan Brown

Los Angeles, CA


Mark D. Taylor

Dallas, TX


Michael K. Kim

Alexandria, VA


Jennie Lee Anderson

San Francisco, CA


Ben V. Seessel

Hartford, CT


Matthew Stein

Boston, MA


Robert J. Herrington

Santa Monica, CA


Tarifa Laddon

Los Angeles, CA