Examining the Need for Transparency in Class Actions

By June 10, 2008Briefly Legal

An editorial in The Examiner today praises Sen. John Cornyn’s bill, S.3033, the Securities Litigation Attorney Accountability and Transparency Act.

The Cornyn bill responds directly to the core Lerach/Weiss abuses (giving illegal kickbacks to clients) and also provides for greater transparency and consistency in the judicial certification of plaintiffs. It further directs courts to establish competitive bidding by attorneys in most class-action cases, and encourages the U.S. Comptroller General to publish regular studies of how much money successful class-action attorneys make per hour.

The legislation also requires disclosure of all campaign contributions from winning attorneys to elected officials were are in a position to influence the selection of counsel for class-action plaintiffs.

The Examiner has been an editorial workhorse on the topic of civil litigation reform, reflecting the views of its owner, Colorado investor Philip Anschutz, cleverly dubbed a “media wildcatter” by BusinessWeek back in 2005, and ably represented on the opinion pages by editors Mark Tapscott and Quin Hillyer. Good things going on at The Examiner, too, including a new Sunday edition beginning July 13. Also, today is the first day at The Examiner for Mary Katherine Ham, who will oversee the paper’s upcoming, reworked website, dcexaminer.com.

So, more profile for tort reform issues. Good all the way around and congrats to The Examiner.

Crossposted from Point of Law.

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