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4 Famous Class Action Lawsuits

Class-action lawsuits have become an important legal remedy available to groups of people harmed or impacted by the actions of others. They give individuals who may have difficulty finding justice in the courts on their own the opportunity to band together and form a larger lawsuit that has a better chance of success. This also helps them to reduce legal costs. Here is a list of four famous class-action lawsuits that have had a huge impact on the legal system, and changed people’s lives for the better.


Brown v. Board of Education

These are famous class action law suits that changed lives across America. It is still often cited and discussed in the legal profession today and is one of the many cases that law students are expected to know and form an opinion on.

Brown v. Board of Education, often just called ‘Brown’ by legal experts, was a ruling by the Supreme Court that held that the ‘separate but equal’ standard was unconstitutional and the ruling ended school segregation in the United States of America. The ruling also had an impact outside of education and is often cited in lawsuits related to racial segregation.

Lane v. Facebook

This is a more contemporary ruling that sent shockwaves through the tech world and led to many people learning for the first time how important their privacy was online, and how many tech companies would use the information they harvested from their users’ online activities.

Facebook created a program called Beacon that monitored Facebook users’ online activity even when they were not using the service, and did so without their consent. Many users joined together to file a class-action lawsuit that resulted in Facebook having to remove Beacon from their platform, set up a foundation to better educate consumers on data privacy, and highlight to many people the importance of their private online data and how some tech companies were using it without their knowledge or consent.


The 2013 Target Data Breach

In 2013, data hackers stole the private information, including billing and address information, of over 70 million customers of the retail giant Target. Target customers from 47 states banded together to form a class-action lawsuit against the company for failing to adequately protect their personal information. Before the lawsuit was eventually settled, it changed the way companies held the private data of their customers, and made consumers much more aware of how companies stored and used their personal information. Companies now understand the value of customer data and take greater measures to protect it.


The 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

The Deepwater Horizon disaster took the lives of eleven oil rig workers and caused one of the largest oil spills ever seen. It was incredibly difficult to contain and clean up, and affected the lives and livelihoods of thousands of people.

The United States government pursued criminal charges against the companies involved, and a class-action lawsuit was also filed by more than 100,000 people who had their lives impacted by the oil spill, including fishermen, property owners, and many others.

Class-action lawsuits like these have changed the way businesses do business and had a massive impact on society. They are great examples of the power class-action lawsuits have to change the world we live in