Class Actions

Companies targeted with class action litigation face potentially irreparable damage to their reputations, market positions, and bottom line. With an unrivaled track record of defeating cases at the early pleadings stage, Hueston Hennigan develops strategic approaches to help a broad array of clients defeat significant class actions and protect their brands.

As experienced trial lawyers, we combine formidable courtroom talent, rigorous investigative skills, and a creative legal approach. During the early stages of litigation, we focus on challenging the plaintiff’s pleadings and pursuing offensive discovery to defeat class certification. In the event the class is certified, we have a strong record of success resolving cases through summary judgment and negotiating highly favorable settlements for our clients.

Representative Experience

  • Southern California Edison. Defending SoCal Edison and Edison International in a multi-county coordinated proceeding against claims arising out of the Thomas Fire, and in litigation arising out of the Montecito mudslides, alleged to be the deadliest flooding event in California in decades.
  • Otero v. Zeltiq Aesthetics. Won dismissal of putative class action against Allergan subsidiary Zeltiq Aesthetics, alleging that customers of the company’s high-profile CoolSculpting fat-freezing system were deceived by marketing materials that described the medical device as having been “cleared” but not “approved” by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (See “Allergan’s Fat-Freezing Unit Freed From False Ad Claims,” Law360)
  • Brown v. USHG et al. Won dismissal of putative national antitrust class action on behalf of a prominent restaurant group and its owner, alleging a price-fixing conspiracy amongst the owners of numerous high-profile restaurants. (SeeBig Apple Eateries Freed From No-Tip Conspiracy Case,” Law360)
  • Shin v. Umeken USA et al. Won dismissal of putative class action brought against our client, a leading health and dietary supplement company, alleging claims of false advertising, misbranding, and RICO, as well as violations of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
  • Ruhnke v. Allergan. Obtained a low-five-figure settlement in a putative consumer class action seeking over $85 million in damages against our client Allergan. The settlement came on the eve of plaintiffs’ certification papers being due and following aggressive offensive discovery that revealed facts damaging to plaintiffs’ case. The suit alleged that Allergan’s leading skincare and cosmetics line violated the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and that the product was being marketed in a way that violated false advertising and unfair competition laws.
  • Hammock et al v. Nutramarks Inc. et al. Won dismissal of federal putative class action regarding homeopathic medicines following aggressive and strategic offensive discovery that revealed the inadequacy of multiple lead plaintiffs and legal deficiencies in the overall case. Plaintiffs agreed to voluntarily dismiss the action just days before their motion for class certification was due.
  • Spears v. First American eAppraiseIT. Substituted in to represent First American eAppraiseIT after a national class was certified with alleged damages exceeding $150 million. After a successful motion, obtained settlement for less than $10 million.
  • Lea v. LinkedIn. Represented LinkedIn in a putative consumer class action alleging violations of California’s common law right of publicity and California’s Unfair Competition Law based on use of members’ names and pictures in emails to other members. After filing a motion to dismiss, obtained a highly favorable settlement.
  • Lesnik v. Eisenmann et al. Representing Tesla in a putative class action asserting that Tesla and other defendants, including automakers BMW, Mercedes, Volkswagen, and Volvo, violated U.S. immigration law, minimum wage and labor law, federal trafficking statutes, and RICO.
  • Opperman et al. v. Path, Inc., et al. Representing Electronic Arts in a putative consumer class action alleging an invasion of privacy claim premised on use of a “find friends” feature integrated into two iPhone-based games distributed by our client.
  • Lopez v. Caskers LLC. Obtained the voluntary dismissal of a putative class action alleging violations of California’s Automatic Renewal Law on behalf of Caskers, a leading e-commerce company focusing on the curation and sale of craft spirits.