Maximizing or Minimizing Opt-Outs

in Mass Torts in a World of Settlement

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2007 | ISBN: 9780226567600
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226567624 | DOI:
Maximizing or Minimizing Opt-Outs

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This chapter covers other efforts to draw upon class settlements as vehicles for peace, whether by expanding or constraining in practical terms the opportunity of persons within the class to opt out of the peace plan and thereby to preserve their opportunity to bring a conventional, individual tort action. It employs the examples of fen-phen and the Sulzer hip implant examples to highlight the fundamental tension in mass tort class settlements between legitimacy and peace. The continued existence of the tort system provides a safety valve that circumscribes the law reform power of the class settlement. The fen-phen class settlement did not stop the progress of litigation toward those dysfunctions.

Keywords: class settlements; peace plan; opt-out; fen-phen; Sulzer hip implant; mass tort; legitimacy; Telectronics

Chapter.  11438 words. 

Subjects: Company and Commercial Law

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