Class Action Lawyer in Waltham
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Waltham, MA 02451
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Class Action Lawyers in Waltham
Whether through the news or television commercials, you probably know about the class action lawsuit involving members of the military that stayed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. The class action lawsuit alleges that between 1957 and 1987, marines that lived on base might have been exposed to water contaminated with carcinogenic substances. Although the status of the class action lawsuit is in limbo as of October 2022, filing a civil lawsuit involving the participation of several plaintiffs consolidates the legal process and allows the plaintiffs to pool legal and financial resources.
Closer to home, six Massachusetts residents living with at least one disability filed a class action lawsuit claiming the state had unfairly institutionalized them by forcing the plaintiffs to live in nursing homes for extended periods. In addition to seeking monetary damages, the plaintiffs also asked the court to issue an injunction that allows them to return to living in a community setting. The legal foundation for the class action lawsuit stems from a historic federal law called the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
A class action lawsuit is a type of legal action called a civil lawsuit, in which several plaintiffs join together to seek common judicial goals. For example, the six plaintiffs invoking the ADA in Massachusetts claim the same type of negligence forced them to live in an environment that caused both monetary and emotional damages. Although class action lawsuits can involve several different legal issues, product liability cases represent the largest percentage of class action lawsuits filed in the United States.
Deciding whether to file or join a class action lawsuit requires the legal advice provided by one of the experienced class action lawyers in Waltham, Massachusetts. A class action attorney provides a wide variety of legal services in addition to consulting clients about the pros and cons of filing or joining a class action lawsuit. The attorney you hire conducts a thorough investigation, as well as collaborates with other attorneys to build the most persuasive case as possible.
At Morgan and Morgan, our more than three decades of experience make us one of the most sought-after litigators for handling class action cases. Whether you file a class action lawsuit as the lead plaintiff or decide to join an ongoing class action case. One of our class action lawyers in Waltham ensures you receive the best legal representation that helps you recover financial losses.
Schedule a free case evaluation today to discuss your options when it comes to a class action lawsuit.
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What Are the Benefits of Filing or Joining a Class Action Lawsuit?
Filing a class action lawsuit benefits both plaintiffs and the judicial system. Consolidating dozens, if not hundreds of individual civil lawsuits free up numerous spots on a judicial docket. If the judicial system did not permit the filing of class action lawsuits, the individual lawsuits associated with the Camp Lejeune case would take decades to reach a resolution. Consolidating numerous similar cases also saves courts money for expenses such as processing fees and the utility bills associated with litigating a case in a courtroom.
Plaintiffs benefit by being able to pool legal and financial resources. A group of attorneys representing different plaintiffs works together to build the strongest case possible. Instead of one plaintiff assuming responsibility for court costs and legal fees, the expenses spread over several plaintiffs to make a class action lawsuit a more affordable legal action. Another benefit of joining a class action lawsuit is that there is just one lead plaintiff. The other plaintiffs do not have to attend court proceedings.
How Does a Class Action Attorney Help Me?
Class action lawyers in Waltham, Massachusetts provide clients with several different types of legal services.
Decides Whether You Should Be the Lead Plaintiff
The lead plaintiff for a class action lawsuit represents the other plaintiffs involved in the litigation. In most cases, the lead plaintiff contacts one of the class action lawyers in Waltham to initiate legal action. However, the attorneys representing plaintiffs for the same class action lawsuit might decide to select another plaintiff to assume the role of lead plaintiff. Your attorney influences the outcome of choosing a lead plaintiff to represent you during a class action lawsuit.
Works With Other Litigators
If you file a civil lawsuit that seeks monetary damages, your attorney from Morgan and Morgan works with one of our investigators to gather and organize evidence, as well as interview the witnesses that provide legal support for your claim. On the other hand, filing a class action lawsuit means your attorney must work closely with other litigators during the evidence collection process. Another benefit of filing a class action lawsuit is your attorney does not have to do all the work required to complete a thorough investigation.
Calculate a Reasonable Value for Compensation
Your lawyer calculates a fair value for the compensation that you deserve. The other attorneys representing clients during a class action lawsuit must do the same to determine the value of compensation to ask for that covers the entire group of plaintiffs. Calculating a reasonable value for compensation is the first step involved in negotiating a settlement.
Negotiate a Settlement
Settling a class action lawsuit out of court saves the plaintiffs both time and money. After calculating a reasonable value for compensation that covers the entire group of plaintiffs, one or more attorneys representing the class action plaintiffs try to negotiate a settlement with the attorneys representing the defendant. If your lawyer is chosen to help negotiate a settlement, the first step in the process is to submit an offer, which the defendant can accept, reject, or amend by submitting a counteroffer. A series of counteroffers can follow until both parties agree to a settlement or decide to take the class action lawsuit to the trial phase of the litigation process.
Represent You During a Trial
A class action lawsuit unfolds a bit differently than an individual civil lawsuit that seeks monetary damages. With a class action lawsuit, the lead plaintiff is the only plaintiff that must attend court proceedings. One of the responsibilities of the lead plaintiff is to keep the other plaintiffs informed about what transpired during each day of a trial. However, your attorney should also keep you updated about what happened during each court session. In addition, your lawyer also might have to testify and/or cross-examine witnesses at the request of the lead plaintiff’s legal team.
What Are the Types of Monetary Damages?
As with filing an individual civil lawsuit, a class action lawsuit typically results in the awarding of three types of monetary damages. The fourth type of monetary damage called wrongful death can be approved by a judge hearing either a class action or an individual civil lawsuit. For example, because the Camp Lejeune class action lawsuit involves deceased plaintiffs, the attorneys representing those clients might ask for the awarding of wrongful death damages.
Otherwise, the lead plaintiff’s class action lawyers in Waltham, Massachusetts request three different forms of compensation.
Typically the type of economic damage that results in the highest value, economic damages cover tangible expenses such as medical bills and repairs completed on damaged property. Medical expenses can include the costs associated with diagnostic tests, treatment programs, and physical therapy sessions. The group of plaintiffs also can request compensation for prescription medications and the use of assistive devices. For the Camp Lejeune case, many plaintiffs required the use of a wheelchair to move around after completing several chemotherapy sessions.
Economic damages also cover the costs associated with damage to private property. In the highly publicized Roundup herbicide case, the group of plaintiffs not only requested economic damages for medical bills, but they also demanded compensation to recover the financial losses connected with tainted farmland. Plaintiffs also have the right to ask for compensation that covers the value of lost wages.
As opposed to economic damages that generate tangible expenses, non-economic damages cover pain and suffering, such as the toll taken on a plaintiff who suffers from emotional distress issues. For both the Roundup and Camp Lejeune cases, both groups of plaintiffs requested non-economic damages to cover the long-term costs of living in fear and with acute anxiety. Dealing with a cancer diagnosis often leads to the development of serious mental and emotional issues, including depression and constant thoughts of suicide.
The attorneys hired to represent the group of plaintiffs filing a class action lawsuit calculate a value for non-economic damages by using a formula that factors in the value of economic damages.
As with an individual civil lawsuit that seeks monetary damages, the judge hearing a class action lawsuit has the legal power to award the group of plaintiffs punitive damages. This type of compensation does not cover the costs associated with economic and non-economic damages. Instead, punitive damages punish the defendant for committing one or more acts of negligence that harmed the group of plaintiffs.
For high-profile cases such as the Roundup and Camp Lejeune lawsuits, punitive damages can exceed the combined value of economic and non-economic damages.
What Criteria Should I Follow for Hiring One of the Best Class Action Lawyers in Waltham?
Because of its collaborative nature, litigating a class action lawsuit requires slightly different legal skills. Because of this, you should consider lawyers that have compiled several years of experience litigating class action lawsuits. At Morgan and Morgan, our class action attorneys have worked class action cases since we first opened our doors back in 1988.
Hiring an attorney who is a responsive communicator helps you remain informed about what transpires during a class action lawsuit. Your lawyer should return emails, phone calls, and text messages no later than the following morning. A responsive communicator alleviates the stress that often develops during a class action lawsuit.
The class action attorney that you hire must represent you during the entire legal process. Some lawyers meet with clients for a free case evaluation, only to disappear during the remaining portion of a case. When you hire one of the class action lawyers in Waltham from Morgan and Morgan, you can expect the litigator to represent you from the day of the free case evaluation to the day when the class action lawsuit is resolved.
Find out more about the class action lawsuit process and whether it is the right strategy for you to take by scheduling a free case evaluation with one of the class action lawyers in Waltham from Morgan and Morgan.