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What will happen if Congress kills class actions?

Class action lawsuits arise from incidents that cause injuries to many people -- for example, the people that purchase a certain product. If that product's production is below reasonable standards and malfunctions, causing injuries or other damages, the people that purchased the product or those injured by the product can band together and file a class action lawsuit.

Sometimes, a class action lawsuit is the only way to get the justice that such people deserve. When bringing a suit against a large company, it can be much more difficult for an individual to be successful in pursuing his or her claim due to a vast difference in legal resources. A class action suit, filed on behalf of a group of people, has much better odds of success.

Threat to class actions

Unfortunately, bill H.R. 985 may take away our ability to participate in class actions. The House has already passed the anti-class action bill and it now sits before the Senate. If this bill passes into law, there will not be an option to take class action against a company that produces defective products.

The argument is that the people that purchased the defective product should not be able to take part in a class action claim if the product is defective. However, those that suffered injuries due to the defect would still be able to take legal action. For example, if you purchased a gun that was made with subpar parts or in another manner that makes it defective, you will not be able to file a claim against the manufacturer unless you suffer an injury, such as a misfire. This means that there will be less pressure on corporations to remove defective products from the market.

If the bill passes and becomes a law, we could see a rise in deaths and injuries due to defective and malfunctioning products that are available to the public. High-impact lawsuits are an important tool in the legal system to keep the public safe.



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