“Cy pres awards under scrutiny”

I’m quoted at length in a National Law Journal story about criticisms of cy pres awards, the ostensibly charitable contributions demanded in class-action settlements that actually serve to inflate attorneys’ fee awards without requiring actual payments to actual class members. Plaintiffs’ attorneys are using the device to try to get around the requirements of the Class Action Fairness Act, which made it more difficult for attorneys to inflate the nominal value of settlements through coupons, the pre-CAFA means by which plaintiffs’ attorneys inflated settlements. (I’m actually misquoted in one sentence: I said “putative class” to the reporter, and it was written in the article as “punitive class.”  Update: corrected in on-line edition.) (Amanda Bronstad, National Law Journal/law.com, Aug. 11).


  • […] (See Previous ClassActionBlawg.com article here).  Overlawyered contributor Ted Frank has an entry today discussing a recent National Law Journal article quoting him that also […]

  • Dear Mr. Frank-
    I have a very difficult question for you. It’s about someone who is supposed to uphold the law, but he has broken the law (frequently I might add). He is a lawyer. His name is Stanley Chesley.
    He stold millions from sick fen phen victims. Then he stold millions from victims of priest abuse in the Covington Kentucky Diocese case. My question is simple: why is Stan Chesley permitted to break the law and get away with it?
    Could you give me an answer, and even perhaps some of your readers could too?

  • It is not clear to me that there were victims from fen phen, and I am convinced that all the priest scandle incidents arose from suggestion and avarice. The gains to Mr. Chesley should be returned to the defendants.