Joining a lawsuit with hundreds or thousands of other people may seem overwhelming. But when the same unethical business practices or dysfunctional medical devices have harmed multiple people, filing a class-action lawsuit may be the best way to hold the wrongdoers accountable. Knowing what to expect throughout the process can ease your worry or fear of entering a class-action lawsuit.
To have a class-action lawsuit, a judge must first rule that it is impractical to have each plaintiff represent his or her own case, often due to the sheer high numbers of plaintiffs involved in suing the wrongdoer. Then, the judge will determine what the parameters of the suit are. For example, anyone who was injured by a certain medical device for a specific date range and by a certain manufacturer. Once the court details how the lawsuit will proceed, the judge then notifies all potential plaintiffs. The judge can do this by mail, newspaper advertisements, TV commercials, social media postings, calls or other forms of notification.
The judge will then decide who will represent the plaintiffs, and the trial will begin. Once the suit is settled, the judge creates a plan to distribute the money awarded to each plaintiff in the case. The time it takes for the entire process to conclude depends on the extent of the case. For larger trials with more plaintiffs, the case might take longer to complete and have the funds distributed to the right people. For smaller cases, the time is usually much shorter.
Being part of a class-action lawsuit can help hold negligent corporations accountable. You can also get the compensation you deserve for the injuries that impacted your life.