By Hampton & Pigott
Posted on 10-10-2023
Joining a class action lawsuit can have both advantages and disadvantages, and your decision to participate, naturally, should be based on your specific circumstances and preferences. To make your decision to join one or not easier, here are some pros and cons of these types of lawsuits for you to consider.
One of the primary benefits of joining a class action is that you typically won't have to pay legal fees upfront. The attorneys representing the class are typically compensated through a contingency fee arrangement, meaning they only get paid if the case is successful.
Another benefit to bear in mind is that class actions bring together a group of individuals who have suffered similar harm. Combining multiple plaintiffs can increase the overall strength of the case, as it may be financially and logistically challenging for individual plaintiffs to pursue legal action on their own.
Class actions also streamline the legal process by consolidating multiple claims into a single lawsuit. This can save time and resources for both plaintiffs and the court system.
Not to mention that class members receive equal treatment and, if successful, share in the damages awarded based on a predetermined formula. This helps ensure that all affected individuals are treated fairly.
And finally, when you join a class action, you share the risks and rewards with other plaintiffs. If the case is unsuccessful, you typically won't be responsible for legal fees.
Of course, there are some potential downsides to class action lawsuits that you should consider as well. One con could be that as a class member, you have limited control over the case's strategy and decisions. The lead plaintiff and attorneys make key decisions on your behalf.
And while class actions can result in significant settlements, individual payouts are often smaller than what a plaintiff might receive in an individual lawsuit, especially if their damages are substantial.
Also worth noting is that in certain situations, you may not have the option to opt out of a class action lawsuit and pursue your own claim separately. This is particularly true if the court has already certified the class.
And while class actions can be a streamlined process, they can also be lengthy and protracted legal battles that may take several years to resolve. This can be frustrating for plaintiffs who want a quicker resolution. If you are someone who really cherishes your privacy, this can be another downside to this type of lawsuit. When you join a class action, you may need to disclose certain personal information to the court and other parties involved in the lawsuit, potentially compromising your privacy.
Hopefully this list has helped you see class action lawsuits through a balanced lens. Of course, these can be very beneficial cases for some, but for others, a more personal approach can make more sense for their situation. If that is the case with you, contact Hampton & Pigott. We will fight for you!