In Mississippi ex rel. Hood v. AU Optronics Corp., No. 12-1036, 2014 U.S. LEXIS 645 (Jan. 14, 2014) the Supreme Court of the United States addressed the circuit split that arose after the 5th Circuit Court of Appeal’s holding in Louisiana ex rel. Caldwell v. Allstate Ins. Co., 536 F.3d 418 (5th Cir. 2008) that a suit brought by the Louisiana Attorney General qualified as a “mass action” under the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”), 28 U.S.C. § 1332(d)(11)(B)(i).  The Fourth Circuit, Seventh Circuit, and Ninth Circuit all reached the opposite conclusion.  The Supreme Court, resolving the split in favor of the Fourth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits, held that the mass action provision can only be invoked to remove a case where the case is brought by 100 or more named plaintiffs.  Lawsuits brought by state attorneys general in which the state is the only named plaintiff do not qualify as “mass actions.”
Continue Reading Suits Brought by State AGs Alone Not “Mass Actions”: SCOTUS Sides With 4th, 7th, and 9th Circuits in Clarifying CAFA’s Mass Action Requirements