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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Ninth Circuit Affirms Decision Shifting Class Notice Costs to Defendant

Hunt v. Imperial Merchant Svcs. Inc., 560 F.3d 1137, is not a wage and hour case, but it is a class action and it makes a good point. The plaintiff in Hunt sued a debt collector for violating the Debt Collection Practices Act. The plaintiff moved for class certification and partial summary judgment. The District Court granted both motions and ordered the defendant to pay the cost of giving notice to the class members. The defendant appealed, and, on March 31, the Ninth Circuit affirmed:
District courts may order a class action defendant to pay the cost of class notification after they determine that the defendant is liable on the merits. They may in an appropriate case shift these notice costs even when the liability decision is under appeal. Here, considering the totality of circumstances, we conclude that the district court did not abuse its discretion by placing the cost of class notification on IMS.
You can read the full opinion here.

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