Financial Recovery Technologies Fast Five provides you with the top news in shareholder class actions. Stay up-to-date on the latest developments in settled (U.S./Canada) claims filing opportunities, Antitrust settlements, Global Group Litigation matters and more. For more information, contact your Financial Recovery Technologies representative or email us.
In the recent decision of the New Zealand Supreme Court in Southern Response Earthquake Services Ltd. v. Brendan Miles Ross et. al., the respondents’ proposed representative opt-out proceeding was approved. The decision represents a departure from the New Zealand Courts’ prior status quo, which was to grant leave for representative actions on an opt-in basis rather than an opt-out basis. The opt-out regime is what is commonly referred to as a “class action” and governed by class proceedings legislation across Canada. In dismissing Southern Response’s appeal and approving the proposed opt-out representative proceeding, the NZ Supreme Court looked to the Canadian approach for guidance and support. This decision may spark class actions reform in NZ similar to what occurred in Canada over the past couple of decades. The Canadian approach will likely inform the NZ Courts’ (and legislatures’) approach in years to come. Click here to read the full article.
Although group litigation has been possible in the English courts for over a century, class actions in England and Wales are now primarily dealt with through Group Litigation Orders (GLOs). Lately there has been an increased focus on GLO litigation. It is perhaps unsurprising that there is growing international interest in using the English courts. Recent years have seen groups of claimants from far-flung jurisdictions attempting to secure GLOs, with the aim of suing English corporates for the alleged wrongs of their overseas subsidiaries. Cases like these are likely to help set the parameters for future international GLO proceedings before the English courts. Scotland too, has now entered this area of law, having introduced class action rules this summer. It is likely that any jurisdiction with new rules will see an increase in the uptake of new cases – and Scotland is no different. A rise in Scottish class actions being raised could hinge on the influence of funding. Like England, litigation funders, working in conjunction with claimant law firms, are likely to establish a greater presence north of the border. Click here to read the full article.
The past few weeks have brought unmistakable signs that shareholder class action firms are homing in on Special Purpose Acquisition Companies, those so-called blank-check entities that go public in order to raise cash to acquire a private business within a limited time frame. More than 170 SPACs have tapped capital markets so far in 2020, raising upward of $50 billion, according to analysis by Kevin LaCroix at the D&O Diary. And though Reuters reported earlier this month that the SPAC IPO frenzy may be abating, plaintiffs’ firms seem eager to pursue class action claims that some SPAC deals breached securities laws. The most convincing evidence: intense competition to lead a proposed shareholder class action against the electric truck maker Nikola. Click here to read the full article.
Mining giant BHP has lost a legal bid to restrict non-Australian shareholders and those who hold their interest through foreign exchanges from joining a class action lawsuit in Australia’s Federal Court over the deadly Samarco dam collapse in 2015. The class action lawsuit was launched in the wake of the disastrous collapse of the Fundao tailings dam at BHP and Vale’s Samarco joint venture in Brazil, which killed 19 people and poured about 40 million tonnes of mine waste into the river system, causing environmental and economic chaos for local communities. BHP, the world’s largest listed miner, lost $25 billion in market value following the disaster, with shares diving across all markets. The class action, led by law firm Phi Finney McDonald, is seeking to recover losses suffered during this period by tens of thousands of shareholders. Click here to read the full article.
Market operator ASX is facing a potentially damaging class action lawsuit over a trading outage last month that left investors sidelined for a full day and put trades worth billions of dollars in limbo. Sydney-based class action specialist law firm Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan told The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age it is investigating the ASX trading outage in preparation for legal action on behalf of investors and market participants who say they lost money as a result of the glitch. The law firm is conducting due diligence on a potential case and will then seek litigation funding. Click here to read the full article.
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