a href=”https://www.gtlaw-consumerproductscounselor.com/files/2014/07/shutterstock_153943454.jpg”>As the Supreme Court has tightened the requirements for certifying a damages class action, some in the plaintiff’s bar have responded by focusing on class actions seeking injunctive relief, particularly in cases against consumer products companies. To certify a class under Rule 23(b)(2), a plaintiff does not have to demonstrate predominance or superiority, and thus an injunctive class should, at least in theory, be easier to certify. But a class action seeking injunctive relief has its own challenges, one of which is establishing that the named plaintiff has standing.
Standing to seek an injunction
In the context of a consumer fraud class action, standing can be a particular challenge. A plaintiff seeking injunctive relief “must demonstrate that he has suffered or is threatened with a ‘concrete and particularized’ legal harm, coupled with ‘a sufficient likelihood that he will again be wronged in a similar way.’” Bates v. United Parcel Serv., Inc., 511 F.3d 974, 985 (9th Cir. 2007). The plaintiff must “establish a ‘real and immediate threat of repeated injury’ ” that “must be likely to be redressed by the prospective injunctive relief.” Id. “Unless the named plaintiffs are themselves entitled to seek injunctive relief, they may not represent a class seeking that relief.” Hodgers–Durgin v. de la Vina, 199 F.3d 1037, 1045 (9th Cir. 1999). Thus, without a threat of future harm, injunctive relief is not available.
Continue Reading The Injunction Conundrum – When Can a Class Action Plaintiff Sue for Injunctive Relief?