Litigation > Class Actions

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has represented clients in class action cases for more than 35 years. According to Chambers USA, “for large class action cases, clients applaud the team for being ‘extremely responsive, practical and creative’.” 

Our attorneys defend class actions every day. We have participated in over 800 class action cases in a wide range of industries, including accounting, banking, broadcasting, construction materials, consumer finance, energy, entertainment, health care, insurance, restaurant, retail, technology and telecommunications. These cases have been litigated in 45 states and the District of Columbia, in both federal and state courts and at the trial and appellate levels. Akin Gump has been counsel of record in more than 200 class action opinions available on Westlaw, including more than 150 since 2000.

We have handled class actions on a wide range of issues. Recent significant outcomes include cases involving antitrust, disability, discrimination, insurance, pensions, securities and wage-hour, and our experience also includes cases related to consumer products, environmental/toxic tort, products liability and unfair competition. Our lawyers are comfortable litigating high-stakes, high-visibility matters that place a premium on skilled advocacy of federal, state or local law. We employ our collective experience to out-think the other side both in and out of the tribunal. We place our clients in the best position to defend against class actions that have been filed. Where possible, we can recommend and help implement programs designed to deter such cases or limit their potential to be certified as class actions.

Representative Matters

Antitrust: Favorable settlement of price-fixing claims brought on behalf of a nationwide class of purchasers of OSB, a material used in housing construction; dismissal of claims brought against a cement company for alleged price-fixing; dismissal of a consumer class action brought against a national bookstore chain arising from its commercial arrangement with Amazon.com; dismissal of a client accused of conspiring to fix the pricing of municipal guaranteed investment contracts.

Consumer Fraud and Unfair Business Practices: Negotiation of a favorable settlement for a retailer in a class action alleging sale of defective water heaters; favorable settlement, on behalf of a television manufacturer, of claims of misleading advertising of flat-panel televisions; obtained  voluntary dismissal of claims that a movie theater chain had violated California’s gift card law; currently defending cases based on claims of defective computers sold by a major manufacturer.

Discrimination: Successful defense on behalf of the state of California of the first Title VII class action to be tried with both disparate impact and treatment claims. After 10 years of litigation in this case involving claims of racial discrimination in the promotional process, the 9th Circuit affirmed the trial verdict on behalf of our client.

Insurance: Reversal of certification of a class based on the assertion that the trial court had failed to properly determine that the prerequisites to certification had been met. The case involved the acquisition of terrorism insurance after 9/11. The case drew significant attention around the country because the trial court’s certification order had the potential to affect nearly every commercial loan in the country that originated prior to 9/11.

Privacy: Representing a family-friendly telephone sales-based movie production and distribution company in telemarketing claims, including compliance with Do Not Call List requirements, abandonment and veracity of statements made both on behalf of the company as well as the charities and nonprofits for which the company was raising funds; current litigation in Northern District of Florida and pending counterclaims have been filed and survived a motion to dismiss on First Amendment grounds.

Securities: Granted a motion for summary judgment where the plaintiffs alleged that our client, a computer storage device company and its officers and directors, improperly accounted for inventory reserves and sought over $800 million in damages. The 5th Circuit affirmed summary judgment for our clients.

Wage-Hour: Successful defense in a decision by the trial court to deny a class that could have exceeded 250,000 in number in a Fair Labor Standards Act case involving the “donning and doffing” of sanitary and protective clothing by employees before and after shifts. The court found the employees were not similarly situated and that individualized determinations would be required.