Friday, October 20, 2006

How Appealling Reports on Seventh Circuit CAFA Case

Yesterday the following post concerning a decision this week from the Seventh Circuit dealing with the Class Action Fairness Act appeared on How Appealing:

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit: The Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 expanded the jurisdiction of federal district courts over class action lawsuits seeking in the aggregate a large amount of damages. One issue that has been frequently litigated in the aftermath of that law's enactment is whether, and if so under what circumstances, cases pending in state court before CAFA became law could be removed to federal court once the law took effect. The added wrinkle in the decision that the Seventh Circuit issued today is that the removal of a case from California state court to a California federal court was originally upheld by a federal district judge in California, and the plaintiffs failed to appeal to the Ninth Circuit. Thereafter, the federal Multidistrict Litigation Panel ordered the case transferred to a federal court in Chicago, where the plaintiffs renewed their challenge to the case's removal to federal court. The federal district judge assigned to hear the case in Chicago agreed that the case had been wrongfully removed and ordered it remanded. Today, the Seventh Circuit affirms, while simultaneously rejecting "the plaintiffs' argument that an erroneous refusal to remand a case under the Class Action Fairness Act is a jurisdictional error, which must therefore remain corrigible until the litigation becomes final by issuance of a final judgment and exhaustion of appellate remedies." Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner issued the decision on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel.


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