DUKES V. WAL-MART TAKE 2?

by Art Gutman Ph.D., Professor, Florida Institute of Technology

According to several sources, Wal-Mart has no objection to extending the deadline for 90 days so as to reestablish a presumably smaller portion of the class that was decertified by the Supreme Court in its June 20, 2011 ruling in Wal-Mart v. Dukes [2011 U.S. LEXIS 4567] (see for example http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-07-22/wal-mart-agrees-to-give-women-extra-time-to-file-lawsuits.html). In a case conference (Dukes v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., N.D. Cal., No. 3:01-cv-02252, case management conference 7/22/11), U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer said he would rule within a day or two about whether to give potential plaintiffs until Oct. 20, the date originally favored by Wal-Mart, or Jan. 16, the date favored by lawyers representing current and former workers, to file new cases. According to Bloomberg News, Wal-Mart’s attorney (Theodore Boutrous) told the judge that Wal-Mart is not opposed to “start the clock fresh.” He stated further that Wal-Mart’s position “has always been that people should get their day in court.” Brad Seligman, one of the plaintiffs’ attorney said that he has been contacted by thousands of women in the past 10 years. Stay tuned.

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