Interested in training for your team? Click here to learn more

ESG Class Action Defense Strategies: Reassessing Traditional Approaches to Standing, Discovery, Pre-Cert Motions

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

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will discuss litigation risks and trends related to Environmental Social Governance (ESG) representations. The program will discuss issues concerning class action topics and expert discovery when litigation is based on alleged discrepancies between what companies have published on social media and in public relations campaigns about their corporate sustainability, corporate and social responsibility, climate change action, or similar topics and their actual practice in those areas.


As ESG continues to drive company commitments and global regulation, company practices that fall short of ESG commitments are facing increased scrutiny and litigation risks of putative class actions alleging fraud, securities violations, false advertising, and other similar claims. Investors are being told that both their fiduciary duties and sound business judgment require them to file securities class action cases to recover losses incurred from alleged incongruent or unfulfilled ESG promises. Gaps between ESG messaging and ESG performance are being actively touted as "asset recovery opportunities" by investors and litigation funding groups.

Historically effective class action strategies may no longer achieve the expected results in ESG-based litigation after recent Supreme Court decisions, including Goldman Sachs Grp. Inc. v. Arkansas Teacher Retirement Sys., 141 S. Ct. 1951 (June 21, 2021), and Transunion v. Ramirez, 141 S. Ct. 2190 (June 25, 2021). Counsel must reevaluate how experts, pre-certification discovery and motions practice and traditional defenses to class certification and substantive allegations hold up when based on ESG commitments.

Listen as this experienced panel of class action lawyers discusses defense strategies in class actions and litigation related to ESG representations regarding climate change, greenwashing, and social diversity.



  1. ESG messaging: aspirations vs. reality
  2. Pre-certification strategies
    1. Climate change messaging
    2. Greenwashing
    3. Social diversity
  3. Continued attractiveness of bifurcated discovery
    1. Climate change messaging
    2. Greenwashing
    3. Social diversity
  4. Establishing standing
    1. Climate change messaging
    2. Greenwashing
    3. Social diversity


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • Are marketing and growth strategies based on ESG escalating litigation or enforcement risks?
  • Do investors have a fiduciary obligation to sue companies if they do not meet their own ESG standards?
  • What is the existing framework to evaluate ESG disclosures and what lies ahead?
  • What disclosures about ESG do public companies need to make?


Brooks, Meegan
Meegan Brooks

Steptoe & Johnson

Ms. Brooks' entire career has focused on defending and advising retailers, e-commerce companies, hospitality...  |  Read More

Cassady, Elizabeth
Elizabeth A. Cassady

Steptoe & Johnson

Ms. Cassady is a trial-ready commercial litigator. She is experienced representing global companies and financial...  |  Read More

Stennes, Libretta
Libretta Stennes

Greenberg Traurig

Ms. Stennes has over 25 years of experience litigating high profile toxic tort, mass tort, and products liability...  |  Read More

Access Anytime, Anywhere

Strafford will process CLE credit for one person on each recording. All formats include course handouts.

To find out which recorded format will provide the best CLE option, select your state:

CLE On-Demand Video