The Incentives of a Class Action

The West Virginia Record discusses Ted Frank's insights on the problems behind class action lawsuit settlements that benefit the attorneys more than the class members.

Tort reform advocate Ted Frank said large incentive awards, like $50,000, keep the class representatives from having the motivation to "act as monitors of the attorneys' fiduciary responsibility to the class."

Frank is the founder of the Center for Class Action Fairness. His organization files objections to proposed class action settlements, usually where he feels the attorneys are benefitting much more than the class members.

"The whole point of a class action is to generate efficiencies that wouldn't be possible in individual actions — so why are the attorneys taking a one-third contingent fee instead of a much smaller percentage?" Frank said.

"Courts determining the adequacy of a class representative should do more to analyze whether the class representative controls the attorney or vice versa."

Read the full article at the West Virginia Record.