Find Lawyers in Houston, Texas for Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants
From early in his practice, John has represented leading industry sector companies in the earliest stages of emerging legal claims and evolving scientific knowledge. He has broad experience in the development of strategies, witness selection and preparation, scientific evidence, corporate knowledge and conduct, and trials. Where trials have not been the best course he has negotiated wise settlements, sometimes with novel settlement procedures for efficient and economical tort damages evaluati...
I am a trial lawyer. For over 30 years, I have litigated, tried, arbitrated, and appealed lawsuits involving virtually every substantive category of civil disputes. I have been board certified since 1990 in Civil Trial Law and Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. I always have and still immensely enjoy this work. Representing people and organizations as plaintiffs and defendants in legal disputes is challenging, fascinating, and rewarding work. I believe that ...
Jon Shoebotham focuses his practice on product liability, environmental litigation, commercial litigation, pharmaceutical, and medical device litigation. Three of the cases he has tried to jury verdict have been selected by The National Law Journal as among the most significant defense verdicts in the United States. He is a member of the Texas and New York state bars and is admitted to practice before the U.S. Ct. of App., Fifth Circuit; U.S. Dist. Ct., E. Dist. Texas; U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist...
With a 30-year litigation career as a partner in global law firms, John Strasburger is an experienced trial lawyer who is as comfortable in the boardroom as he is in the courtroom. His work typically includes matters involving novel, urgent, and sensitive disputes, that are often the subject of government and media scrutiny. Licensed in both Texas and New York, he has represented some of the world’s largest companies, as well as mid-market companies and high net worth individuals. His p...
Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants Definition
Class actions and mass tort litigation typically arise from a single episode or related events that allegedly injure a “mass” of individuals and/or their property. The number of claimants may range from a few dozen to many thousands. The volume of plaintiffs and complexity of claims and issues dictate special judicial management and require experienced defense counsel. In mass tort litigation, global issues that affect all claimants may be consolidated, especially in federal courts. Cases may be aggregated in federal multi-district litigation (“MDLs”) for coordination of pretrial proceedings, in which questions of fact common to all plaintiffs, key legal issues, and discovery may be handled on a global basis. Following the determination of fact issues, plaintiffs’ unique claims often are tried independently. The Court may order trials of the claims of certain plaintiffs in mass tort litigation as test, or “bellwether,” cases. Bellwether cases may provide the courts with guidance on the related claims’ suitability for group development and litigation. State court consolidation and management vary widely. With class actions, the class of plaintiffs may be voluminous, with all asserting damages arising from a common occurrence or related events; however, in contrast to mass tort litigation, the “class” often is represented by a single individual or a small group of individuals who embody the claims and damages of the larger group. Class actions in federal courts are governed by Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23. Members of the “class” may be bound by findings related to that class. Class certification often is denied due to state law restrictions (or prohibitions) on class actions or the predomination of plaintiffs’ individualized circumstances over any common issues.
Defense counsel's role in consolidated litigation includes all tasks inherent in the traditional litigation setting, with an added managerial component of litigation coordination and organization of global discovery, including:
- Identification and differentiation of the nature of individualized and global claims
- Document management and review, including electronic data and e-mails
- Expert witness development and preparation
- MDL and bellwether trials
- Defeating class certification
- Improper joinder
- Development of comprehensive trial strategies
- Development of consistent factual and legal positions in coordination with counsel representing named defendants on local and national levels
- Working with lawyers from different firms as a “virtual” law firm
- Trials of claims of certified classes or individual mass tort plaintiffs
- Global settlement negotiations
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