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What do I Have to do if I Bring a Class Action Lawsuit?
Class action lawsuits exist to level the playing field between “the little guy” and big time corporations. Plainly speaking, one person typically can’t take on a big corporation because the costs to win a case would far exceed what one individual could recover. When a group of people have a common claim, a class action can allow them to seek justice.
All that said, there has to be at least one person who brings a class action lawsuit. That person is commonly referred to as the lead plaintiff. If you are a lead plaintiff, it usually means that the attorney for the class thinks that your story is representative of what the whole group is going through. They also likely think that you would make a good witness. A class action lawsuit could potentially have millions of plaintiffs. Obviously not all of them can testify and in reality, usually no more than a handful do testify.
So what would you have to do if you are a lead plaintiff? In most cases you would have to attend a meeting with a law firm and answer questions. There would likely be a few follow up phone calls and e-mails. If the case went forward at some point you would have to give a deposition which allows the defense lawyers to ask you some questions. This can take up to three hours. While most cases are dismissed or settled, some do go to trial. If your case went to trial you can anticipate spending at least one day in court. All of this would happen over a period of years.
In return for being the lead plaintiff, your name is attached to the lawsuit. That may not sound like much, but many people who have brought these lawsuits have literally changed the world for the better. It’s nice to be associated with that. In addition, the lead plaintiff for a class action lawsuit almost always receives substantially more money than the rest of the group. This happens in recognition of the time that you spend and the efforts you provided that made the case possible.
Before any of this can happen of course, there actually has to be a case. If you have any questions as to whether or not you might have a class action lawsuit or any general questions about being a lead plaintiff, please do not hesitate to contact us at (312) 346-5320. All inquiries are free and confidential.
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