Class Action Defense

The Class Action Defense attorneys at Much Shelist have extensive experience defending companies in class action litigation in both state and federal courts. While we are innovative and vigorous advocates, what further differentiates us from the pack is the background that many of our attorneys have in the plaintiff's class action bar, coupled with our premier Policyholders' Insurance Coverage practice. Our attorneys are able to draw on this unique combination of capabilities in defending complex class action matters and resolving them as quickly and efficiently as possible. In addition, our business model allows us to offer a billing and staffing structure that delivers significant value to our clients.

Class Action Experience

Attorneys in the Class Action Defense practice have achieved excellent results at the trial and appellate levels for our corporate clients and others—from large financial institutions, restaurant chains and midsize companies to entrepreneurial businesses. In this context, we have represented both corporations and their respective officers and directors. Complementing an exceptional record in class action defense matters, many of our attorneys also have a wealth of past experience on the plaintiffs' side, giving them valuable insight into how best to defend these complex cases.

We are currently defending or have defended class actions in a wide variety of areas, including:

  • Consumer fraud and unfair business practices claims
  • Securities fraud
  • Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
  • "Blast fax" cases under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)
  • Breach of fiduciary duty claims regarding employee benefits under ERISA
  • Labor and employment matters, including discrimination and wage and hour claims
  • Truth in Lending Act (TILA)
  • Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)
  • Business fraud
  • Health care
  • Antitrust and unfair competition
  • Mass torts

Past important decisions include the following:

  • Cohen v. Compact Power Systems, Inc., Cook County, Illinois: Defense of class action alleging violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act. Dismissal granted on all claims and affirmed on appeal. 
  • Akinyemi v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A.,Cook County, Illinois: Defense of class action alleging breach of contract. Dismissal granted on all claims and affirmed by the Illinois Appellate Court.
  • Waller v. Wood, Northern District of Illinois: Ongoing defense of trustee in class action alleging retirement plan-related ERISA violations. 
  • Schlesinger v. Ticketmaster, California Superior Court: Nationwide consumer class action alleging violations of the California Business and Professions Code. Obtained favorable settlement.
  • Targin Sign, Inc. v. Midwest Energy, Inc., Northern District of Illinois: Ongoing defense of class action alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act, and conversion.
  • West v. Home Warranty of America, Cook County, Illinois: Ongoing defense of class action alleging breach of contract and violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act and Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.
  • Ivanova v. R & R Goldman and Associates, Northern District of Illinois: Defense of class action alleging violations of Fair Credit Reporting Act. Obtained favorable settlement for client.
  • CE Design, Ltd. v. High Standard Fabricating, Inc., Lake County, Illinois: Defense of class action alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act, and conversion. Obtained favorable settlement for client.
  • JT's Frames, Inc. v. Lower Electric, L.L.C., Northern District of Illinois: Defense of class action alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act, and conversion. Obtained favorable settlement for client.
  • R. Rudnick & Co. v. Worksmart, Inc., Cook County, Illinois: Defense of class action alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Illinois Consumer Fraud Act, and conversion. Plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the case with prejudice after defendant filed its answer.
  • Sclafani v. Barilla America, Inc., Kings County, New York: Defense of class action alleging misrepresentations in violation of General Business Law 349. Obtained favorable settlement for client.

Insurance Coverage Experience

Much Shelist maintains a robust Policyholders' Insurance Coverage practice. As a result, we can provide the representation our clients need to retain the benefit of their insurance coverage when they are named as defendants in class actions.

For example, we have successfully required insurers to accept the defense of class action litigation in cases brought under the TCPA and similar statutes—even when the carriers initially attempted to deny coverage. In fact, we successfully argued to the Illinois Supreme Court one of the most important decisions in the insurance coverage area in 2006, Valley Forge Ins. Co. v. Swiderski Electronics, Inc.

By combining our knowledge of insurance coverage law with our ability to fight and defend class actions, we have been able, in many instances, to reduce the overall costs of defending these types of cases.