What Are Class Action Lawsuits?
According to Alabama’s Unified Judicial System, if you were harmed due to the negligent or reckless actions of another, you have the right to take legal action. Whether your injury was caused by an accident or a defective product, the person responsible may have to compensate you for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and several other losses. In some cases, however, a large group of people may be harmed by the same product. When this occurs, filing a class action lawsuit may be the most rewarding and cost-effective legal option. To find out how you can start a class action to recover funds, contact the federal class action lawyers in Alabama with Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C.
Class Action Versus Mass Tort
While most people have heard of class action lawsuits, the term “mass tort” may be less familiar. These distinct lawsuit types are often lumped together and for good reason. In many cases, the cost of filing several lawsuits may not be worth the award that each person will receive. By sharing one legal team, mass tort and class action lawsuits dramatically decrease the cost of taking legal action. Having one team of federal class action lawyers also eliminates mountains of paperwork. Additional similarities include:
- A large number of people who have been harmed in some way
- The lawsuit itself is one action, as opposed to many individual lawsuits
- One defendant or a group of defendants are accused of causing harm
However, class action and mass tort lawsuits differ in how clients are treated, the types of accidents that are involved, and the number of people who band together to file the lawsuit. For example, class action lawsuits typically involve hundreds of plaintiffs, whereas a mass tort lawsuit may be comprised of far fewer people. In a class action lawsuit, the individual needs of each victim are not attended to. In most cases, one person is elected to represent the group who was harmed. Once an amount is awarded in court, each plaintiff receives an equal cut. With mass tort lawsuits, the unique injuries of each victim are considered. Although one lawsuit is being filed, each person might receive a different award.
Another major difference between class action and mass tort lawsuits involves how a group of people was harmed. A group of 5,000 people who all received minor injuries from a defective razor blade, for example, might file a class action lawsuit. On the other hand, hundreds of victims who were hurt in train crash might opt for filing a mass tort lawsuit. In most cases, class action lawsuits involve injuries that were caused by a defective product, such as drugs, vehicles, or medical equipment. Mass tort lawsuits, however, often involve a devastating event in which severe injuries are sustained.
Which One is Right for Me?
Determining which type of class action lawsuit to pursue depends on a number of factors. If, for example, you and several others sustained major injuries in a plane crash, it may be worth your time to file a mass tort lawsuit. The award is likely to be bigger because of the severity of your injuries, and you will receive individual attention from the legal team that is responsible for the case. If, on the other hand, you sustained minor injuries from a defective product and you do not want to be heavily involved in legal proceedings, filing a class action lawsuit may be your best option.
Let the Federal Class Action Lawyers with Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. Fight for your Rights
Our class action lawyers at Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. have years of experience in helping people fight for the compensation they deserve. With our knowledge and expertise, we can give your case the best possible chance of success. If you believe that others were hurt in the incident you were involved in, it may be possible for our skilled legal team to help you find others who would be willing to participate in a class action lawsuit. Whether it involves examining existing evidence or launching a full-scale investigation, our class action attorneys will work tirelessly to get results.