The New York Lawyer has an article (via law.com – free regist. req’d) on the Class Action Fairness Act, which looks like it has a chance of passing in the Senate this year. The legislation applies some of the reform concepts in the PSLRA and SLUSA to all class actions. Notably, class actions meeting certain jurisdictional criteria would have to be heard in federal court. As in the field of securities class actions, one of the beneficiaries of the legislation will be large, national plaintiffs’ firms that have the resources to bring these cases.
Quote of note: “The burden on federal judges arising from any legislation that moves class actions to the federal courts has raised concerns among judicial administrators who express concern about the additional caseloads. Because of the added delays and expenses, the cumulative effect of the legislation may cultivate a new generation of stronger plaintiffs’ firms that can match their counterparts in size and expertise.”