20th ABA National Institute on Class Actions Celebrates 50th Anniversary of 1966 Amendments to Rule 23

On October 19-20, 2016, at the Wynn Las Vegas resort, the ABA held its 20th annual National Institute on Class Actions.  As some of you know, I serve on the Planning Committee for the Institute.  This year’s highlights included:

  • Professor Arthur Miller provided a retrospective on the origins of the critical 1966 Amendment to Rule 23 which gave us the 23(b)(3) opt-out damages class action, the most prevalent form of class action today. Prof. Miller captivated  the audience with his remarks. Many thanks to Prof. Ed Cooper of the University of Michigan Law School for suggesting this program for our 50th Anniversary theme!;
  • Judge Richard Posner of the  U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit appeared via video feed on Day 2.  Judge Posner–whose opinions have been influential in the area of class action practice–offered several controversial and at times even irreverent observations. We’ve been hounding Judge Posner for  years to join us, and were delighted to have his participation for  this  special anniversary gathering;
  • Drew and Institute Chair Dan Karon led off this year’s Institute with Class Actions 101, a program that  Drew designed and prepared the course materials for;
  • Professor Jack Coffee of  Columbia Law  and Alexandra Lahav of University Connecticut School of Law gave their annual review of  class action decisions;
  • Drew moderated a panel exploring application of the Supreme Court’s Tyson Foods decision re. “representational evidence” outside the employment context. Judge Terrence Berg of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan joined the other  outstanding national experts on this panel.

For more  information about the programs see the Institute brochure here. (Please contact me for materials of interest.)  For a more complete recap of the event, check out  Paul Karlsgodt’s blog here.

SAVE THE DATE!  Next year’s Institute will be held  on October 26-27,  2017, at the  Hotel Palomar in Washington, D.C. Please forward Drew any suggestions you  may have for topics of interest.