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Francesca Richmond

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UPDATE: The European Commission published the agreed text of the directive on representative actions for the protection of the collective interests of consumers and repealing Directive 2009/22/EC here. We will publish an analysis of the text in due course and hold a webinar on the implications of this reform later in the year. Please do let us know if you would like to brainstorm the opportunities and implications for your business. An updated (and reportedly…

UNITED KINGDOM – A significant development in UK class actions landed today – with the English Court of Appeal issuing a judgment that requires the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal (“CAT”) to reconsider certification of an opt out class action issued against Mastercard on behalf of approx 46.2m people and valued at £14.098bn.  The judgment is published in full here and provides strong guidance to the CAT, indicating that a collective proceedings order will now be…

EUROPE – The European Commission is exploring ways that it might expand consumer access to justice, and in particular increase the availability of “class” or collective civil litigation across the EEA while avoiding what it characterises as US style excess in class litigation.

Alternative Proposals

  1. Non-legislative options: to enhance qualified entities’ capacity to manage both injunction and redress actions.
  2. Targeted revision of the Injunctions Directive: amends several key areas, in particular by expanding the scope of the Injunctions Directive to protect consumers in areas such as financial services, energy, telecommunications and environment.
  3. Targeted revision of the Injunctions Directive + consumer collective redress: aims to introduce further procedural efficiencies such as a “one stop shop” where representative bodies could ask the courts and/or administrative authorities to stop any breach of the law that harms consumers and obtain redress for anyone that has suffered loss.

The UK’s Competition Appeal Tribunal (“CAT”) has refused to certify the £14 billion consumer class claim brought against Mastercard under the English class action regime introduced in October 2015. This is the second collective action filed under that regime and both have failed at this first hurdle in the procedure.  However, this does not necessarily signal that the regime cannot be used for appropriate cases and on behalf of carefully designed classes of claimant. The…