Tagged: Ninth Circuit

Supreme Court in Spokeo Holds Plaintiffs Must Allege More Than a Bare Procedural Violation to Stand Up for Their Rights

After much anticipation, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Spokeo v. Robins, a case that many believed would finally establish a definitive ruling as to whether a federal statute which awards statutory damages to those impacted is sufficient to confer Article III standing. The question is particularly relevant in the class action context where class members could be awarded statutory damages in the absence of any actual damages. Unfortunately, although the Court considered the scope of the injury-in-fact requirement, the 6-2 decision still leaves the standing question open to interpretation by courts and by both plaintiffs and defendants.

Supreme Court Holds Unaccepted Offer of Judgment for Complete Relief to Named Plaintiff in Putative Class Action Does Not Moot Claims

The Supreme Court of the United States recently issued its ruling in Campbell-Ewald v. Gomez, a closely watched appeal in which the Court held that a complete offer of relief to a named plaintiff in a class action does not moot the individual’s claim. As explained by Justice Ginsburg, writing for the majority and drawing upon lessons taught to a “first-year law student,” an unaccepted settlement offer “creates no lasting right or obligation,” “has no force,” and, thus, “is a legal nullity, with no operative effect” that “does not moot a plaintiff’s case.” The Court’s opinion follows up on its 2013 decision in Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk, in which it assumed that an offer of complete relief, even if unaccepted, moots a plaintiff’s individual claim to the extent the plaintiff’s Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) collective-action allegations could not stand on their own.

Supreme Court Decides Time Spent to Undergo Security Screening is Noncompensable

The time warehouse workers spent waiting to undergo and undergoing antitheft security screenings before leaving work is not compensable under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA), 29 U.S.C. § 201 et. seq., as amended by the Portal-to-Portal Act of 1947, §251 et. seq. (Portal-to-Portal Act), according to the United States Supreme Court, which unanimously decided Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc. v. Busk on December 9, 2014.

Burden of Demonstrating CAFA Jurisdictional Amount Lowered for Ninth Circuit Defendants

Following the rule announced in Standard Fire Ins. Co. v. Knowles, the Ninth Circuit has reversed course on the burden borne by defendants seeking to remove under the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”). Now, defendants need only establish the amount in controversy by a preponderance of the evidence. In Rodriguez v. AT&T Mobility Services, the Ninth Circuit was faced with a putative class representative’s waiver of all damages above $5 million. The waiver was designed to avoid removal under the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”), but earlier this year, the Supreme Court held in Standard Fire that such waivers are ineffective. Therefore, the Ninth Circuit vacated the District Court’s order remanding the case to state court and remanded to the District Court for further proceedings.