Scott Haworth: Recent Developments with No Injury Class Action Suits

Legal professional Scott Haworth possesses significant experience in national litigation and represents clients such as cosmetics manufacturers, medical device producers, and telecommunication firms. Published in many legal journals, Scott Haworth wrote “Stopped Before They Start–Dismissing the No-Injury Class Action” for the December 2010 edition of For the Defense.

No injury class action lawsuits involve many of the same elements as traditional class action suits. Generally a federal matter, they must feature a large enough number of plaintiffs that it would become impractical for all of them to try the case individually. The plaintiffs must share similar legal and factual issues, while the attorney chosen to defend their case must represent the class as a whole. Though most class action suits require some form of injury, no injury suits attempt to eliminate the injury-in-fact aspect of these cases.

In April 2013, the United States Supreme Court issued a decision regarding these claims based on the case Whirlpool Corp. v. Glazer. Commencing in the Sixth Circuit, the suit involved Ohio purchasers of Whirlpool washing machines who claimed breach of warranty, negligent design, and negligent failure to warn, and they sought class certification. The initial court approved, and Whirlpool filed a petition for certiorari with the Supreme Court, arguing that the class would be overly broad and violate Federal Rules of Civil Procedure because most of the plaintiffs were not injured. The justices agreed with Whirlpool Corporation, vacated the Sixth Circuit’s decision, and remanded it to the lower court.