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Publications | April 28, 2020
2 minute read

COVID-19 Class Action Litigation Is On the Rise

The widespread economic disruption caused by COVID‑19 has created fertile ground for plaintiffs’ class action firms. Class action activity is on the rise and is likely to intensify in the coming months, especially in the following areas:

Refunds. Most class action activity in response to COVID‑19 so far has been actions demanding refunds on behalf of customers. Class actions were recently filed against nearly all of Michigan’s major public universities, demanding refunds of fees, tuition and room and board. Class actions have also been filed against Ticketmaster (seeking refunds for cancelled or postponed events), 24 Hour Fitness (seeking refunds of gym membership fees), and United Airlines (seeking refunds for cancelled flights). We expect class actions in this category to continue in the coming weeks and months.

Premises Liability and Consumer Tort Claims. Several class actions have been filed asserting that companies failed to take appropriate measures to protect customers and/or the public from COVID‑19, including several class actions brought against cruise lines. We expect to see more class actions asserting these types of claims, especially against hospitals, restaurants, nursing homes, delivery services, ride-sharing/transportation companies, funeral homes, event venues and other places of public accommodation.

Employment. Numerous suits have been filed seeking to represent classes of employees impacted by COVID‑19. They include claims alleging unsafe working conditions, failure to provide PPE to employees, and wage and hour issues.

Class actions lawsuits are on the rise, and we expect that trend to intensify as society struggles to adapt to these unprecedented times. If your business is facing a class action lawsuit or is dealing with issues that increase class action exposure, Warner’s class action defense team is here to help. Please contact Michael Brady, Amanda Fielder, Michael Azzi or Tom Amon for additional information.