Defeating Employment Class Certification After Wal-Mart v. Dukes

Leveraging the Decision to Defeat Certification and Minimize Class Action Exposure

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Recorded event now available

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Program Materials

This CLE webinar will provide a briefing for counsel on the key certification issues addressed in the Wal-Mart v. Dukes decision, explain the new standards for class certification, and recommend steps for employment counsel to defeat certification and minimize class action exposure.

Description

On June 20, 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its highly anticipated ruling in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, holding that gender discrimination litigation filed on behalf of 1.5 million female employees at 3,400 Wal-Mart stores across the nation could not be pursued as a class action.

The ruling significantly changes the standards for class certification in employment litigation. In light of the new standards set by Wal-Mart v. Dukes, employment counsel should advise their clients on effective strategies for defeating class certification and minimizing class action exposure.

Listen as our authoritative panel of employment law attorneys discusses the key certification issues addressed in the Wal-Mart v. Dukes decision and the new standards set for class certification. The panel will explain best practices for employment counsel to defeat certification and minimize class action exposure.

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Outline

  1. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. v. Dukes: Litigation History
    1. Class certification requirements under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
    2. District Court and 9th Circuit’s rulings and rationale
    3. U.S. Supreme Court's ruling and rationale
  2. New standards for establishing class certification
    1. Commonality standard under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 23(a)
    2. “Significant Proof” standard to establish policy of discrimination
    3. Consideration of merits, including the application of Daubert, at certification
    4. Impact of decision on future class action employment litigation
  3. Strategies for defeating certification and minimizing class action exposure
    1. Interplay of managers’ discretion and objective criteria regarding pay and promotion
    2. Creating and distributing well-drafted EEO policies
    3. Training and advising executives regarding documents that may be considered evidence of EEO policies
    4. Self-audits and the use of statistics
    5. Other strategies including arbitration and class action waivers

Benefits

The panel will review these and other key questions:

  • What are the new standards for class certification following Wal-Mart v. Dukes?
  • What are the key strategies counsel can utilize to defeat certification and minimize class action exposure?
  • What is the anticipated impact of the Wal-Mart v. Dukes decision on future class action employment litigation?

Following the speaker presentations, you'll have an opportunity to get answers to your specific questions during the interactive Q&A.

Faculty

Michael Westheimer
Michael Westheimer

Of Counsel
Baker & McKenzie

He handles individual and class action litigation in state and federal courts, administrative hearings, arbitrations,...  |  Read More

Jason C. Schwartz
Jason C. Schwartz

Partner
Gibson Dunn & Crutcher

Mr. Schwartz's practice includes the full range of labor and employment matters, including those...  |  Read More

Jane M. McFetridge
Jane M. McFetridge

Managing Partner
Jackson Lewis

She handles employment litigation, including both state and federal claims, and individual and class action suits. Her...  |  Read More

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