Presented by Paul Llewellyn. EU CLASS ACTIONS: A PRACTITIONER’S VIEWPOINT. LORD STEYN HAS OBSERVED:.
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“The question is sometimes raised whether (our) system should be replaced by the system of class actions as it is known in the United States….. Massive awards for injuries, which are not of a serious kind, would rightly not be tolerated by English public opinion. (Further), it is a feature of class actions in the United States that firms of lawyers earn billions of dollars in cases which do not even come to trial and often result in meagre recoveries by individual claimants. This too would be unacceptable in England.
Finally, I would say that in England there is a general perception among judges, in this respect reflecting public opinion, that the tort system is becoming too expensive and wasteful. There is also an unarticulated but nevertheless real conviction among judges that we must not allow our social welfare state to become a society bent on litigation. The introduction of United States-style class action cannot but contribute to such unwelcome developments in our legal system”
“The pursuit of an unrestrained culture of blame and compensation has many evil consequences and one is certainly the interference with the liberty of the citizen”.
“…a crusade to export America’s legal system around the world”.
“The future in Europe for both law and society is good”.
“…encouraging a competition culture, not a litigation culture.”