Our Attorneys have handled well over a hundred class and representative actions representing consumers and employees. A Class Action is a lawsuit that allows the rights of a large number of people to be decided in one court action. See what requirements must be satisfied to bring a class action suit. A class action can be a means of making change. For example, if one person sues alone to allege they’ve been overcharged on bank fees, for example, then the bank can pay that person off and go right back to doing business as usual. However, if filed as a class action, the rights of a group of people are being defended, and it can sometimes be enough to make a company change their policies or method of doing business. In short, it can make a big company take notice and make meaningful change, in the way an individual suit cannot.
What is a Class Action?
A class action is a lawsuit that allows a large number of individual claims and the rights of a large number of people to be decided in one court action. Oftentimes, by combining many claims into a single class action suit, class members with relatively small claims can have their rights protected economically.
A class action plaintiff represents the interests of persons not before the court. As a result, not all potential class members must become parties to the lawsuit to have their rights decided. Typically, only a few representatives of the class actually appear in court.
In order to be certified as a class action, these general requirements should be satisfied:
Numerous class members. There must be enough people to justify bringing the suit as a class, rather than having each person participate as a named plaintiff. Class actions have been brought with as few as 20 or 30 people and as many as millions.
Common facts among the class members. There must be questions of law or facts common to the potential class members, meaning similar unlawful or unfair conduct by the defendants, such as violations of labor laws, failure to pay overtime compensation, etc.
Similar claims or defenses. Each person in the class must be making allegations typical to the other class members. The plaintiffs must show that common questions predominate over individual questions. If there are a lot of individualized issues among the potential class members, a class action may not be the best way to proceed. The named class representatives will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the class members.
The named Plaintiff must have similar claims as the potential class members. The attorneys representing the case must also be adequate, and must be no conflicts of interest in representing the potential class members.
Please look at our office Case History for some of the cases our Attorneys have handled.
Common Misconceptions about Class Actions
A large group of plaintiffs is not required to put their names on the lawsuit before the suit is even filed. If you know that, for example, the baby formula that you received was contaminated, you don’t need to know a lot of other people in the situation by name and telephone number. It’s your lawyer’s job, during the discovery practice, to get that information. In short, if you were a victim of a common practice or event that happened to others, you may be all that is needed to represent a class.
You don’t need to have suffered a large amount of damages to bring a class action lawsuit. Often, lawyers can’t take cases with a small amount of damages to court because the filing fees and other costs are worth more than what the victim has a chance to recover. Not so with class actions. Just because your damages are small doesn’t mean a recovery isn’t possible through a lawsuit when that suit is filed as a class action. One of the chief benefits of these suits is that they allow people who normally could not get a lawyer to take their case (especially without paying lawyers fees upfront) to get experienced representation.
You don’t have to pay the lawyer’s fees for your case upfront if you want to bring a class action. There are typically two types of fee arraignments for lawyers, generally speaking: contingency and those who charge upfront hourly fees and/or require retainers. Those with upfront fees can require a big check for thousands of dollars from their clients, out of which the lawyer takes his/her fees and costs as the case progresses, whether or not the client get results. Our office is a contingency fee office. That means we collect a share of what is recovered as part of the lawsuit. That means there are no upfront costs or fees for people who need legal help.
How do I know if I have a good case?
A lot of people who call our office just want to know if they have a good case or not. They don’t want to waste their precious time if there is no point. Because we are a contingency fee office, that means we’re investing in your case from the very beginning. We advance costs and filing fees, often amounting to thousands of dollars, on the belief that your case has merit. Because of our investment of time and money in your case, we are selective in filing a cases that we believe has a substantial chance of success. We only get paid if there is a positive result in the case. We only take select cases in the first place.
The term “Civil Rights” generally refers to those rights established under state and federal constitutions or statutes protecting certain “unalienable rights”, such as voting or being free from unlawful searches or seizures and discrimination based upon gender, race, disability, age or other characteristics. This office handles a wide variety of civil rights cases under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, the Unruh Civil Rights Act, and actions commonly referred to as “Section 1983” actions.
Your Civil Rights:
Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), 42 US Code Section 2000e-2 is a federal law which prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of an individual’s race, color, religion, sex or national origin.
Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is a federal law which protects certain employees against age discrimination in employment.
California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), California Government Code Section 12940, et seq., is similar to Title VII and protects individuals under California law. The protections are similar to those of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but is much broader
in its protection of employees with medical conditions. The FEHA also protects employees against discrimination based upon gender, race, religion, medical condition and other characteristics.
Unruh Civil Rights Act, California Civil Code Section 51, et seq., prohibits discrimination by California “business establishments” on the basis of protected characteristics such as race, gender and disability.
Title 42 US Code Section 1983 is a federal law which provides protection of individuals denied rights under “color of state law.” These actions are typically based upon denial of due process or equal protection, such as police brutality, or termination of government employees’ jobs.
If you believe you have had your civil rights violated, contact our office for a consultation.
This office handles actions brought under the California Law (section 17200) Unfair Practices Act. Section 17200 is also sometimes referred to as the California “Unfair Competition law.” Section 17200 includes five definitions of unfair competition: an unlawful business act or practice, an unfair business act or practice, a fraudulent business act or practice, unfair, deceptive, untrue or misleading advertising, or any act prohibited by Sections 17500. A “unfair” business practice defines practices that have the tendency to deceive the public. An “unlawful” practice is anything that violates any statute, regulation, or rule. Actual fraud requires a misrepresentation of fact, actual and reasonable reliance, and resulting damages. Under Section 17200, the only requirement is to demonstrate that the public is likely to be deceived. This law was enacted to safeguard the public against the creation or perpetuation of business monopolies and to foster and encourage competition, by prohibiting unfair, dishonest, deceptive, destructive, fraudulent, and discriminatory practices by which fair and honest competition is destroyed or prevented.
Unfair Business Practices
An unfair business practice is one that has the tendency to deceive the public or its employees. Unfair Business Practice encompasses wrongfully withheld wages, fraud, unfair competition, misrepresentation, price discrimination and false advertising. Unfair Business actions may be brought by any aggrieved person acting for the interest of the persons. For example, in the court case of Cortez v. Purolator Air Filtration Products Company, an employee sued their employer under the California Labor Code and the Unfair Practices Act and obtain wrongfully withheld wages due all employees. One of the major advantages for the consumer in such an action, is that the Statute of Limitations may allow suits for events which occurred up to four years prior to the suit.
Contact our office to find out how the law may apply to you.
The Law Offices of Michael L. Carver is a California law firm handling a wide variety of legal issues, including class actions, unfair competition, unfair business practices, victims’ rights, discrimination and civil rights infringements. We represent clients in the California Courts, United States District Courts of California and the Federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. We have multiple office sites in California.
What Our Office Does
We fight for those who have had their constitutional and legal rights violated by corporate entities. We are a plaintiff’s law firm that prosecutes civil cases under the ADEA (age), the ADA (disability), Unruh Civil Rights Act, Business and Professions Code (fraud and unfair competition) and other civil rights statutes to vindicate you and your rights in state and federal court.
When your rights have been violated, you need strong representation. Our attorneys fight to protect your legal and constitutional rights violated by corporations engaging in unlawful practices.
Why Should you Call us?
We provide quality, professional representation for our clients at reasonable fees. With many years of hands-on experience handling business enterprises, we combine aggressive representation with a problem-solving approach to resolve legal issues. We believe in honestly informing our clients if we believe that litigation is not in their best interests. We work closely with our clients, so they are an integral part of their case.
This site provides general information about our law practice regarding civil rights, unfair business practices, victims’ rights and class action suits. Visit Practice Areas for general information about the areas of law in which we handle cases. Our site has been prepared using California and Federal law, and may generally answer many common questions regarding legal rights and remedies. However, in most cases, our website will not provide complete answers to your legal questions, because each person’s situation is different and there are numerous exceptions to every rule of law. The law is changed frequently by the legislature and is interpreted by the courts.
To discuss your legal needs and how the law may apply to you, please contact our office for a free case evaluation: 1-855-700-5678
Labor and Employment laws change frequently, either by changes in statutes, enactments of new statutes or interpretations by the Courts. For this reason, a personal consultation must be scheduled to adequately apprise our clients of important laws and cases which affect them. This page will briefly describe some of the recent developments in Labor and Employment Law.
Our main office is located in Chico, California. Because we represent clients throughout California, we have multiple satellite offices throughout California for your convenience. Just call the nearest office number for an appointment. We do not provide drop-in consultations, because our attorneys are on precise schedules with other matters and court appearances. However, it is usually possible to schedule an immediate appointment if necessary.
We represent clients in cases in the California Courts, the United States District Courts of California and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal. Mr. Carver is a member of the Butte County Bar Association, Los Angeles County Bar Association, Sacramento County Bar Association, and the California Employment Lawyers Association. We represent the victims of abuse and prosecute cases under state and federal civil rights laws, anti-discrimination laws, victims’ rights acts and unfair competition laws.
Carver Law was founded by Senior Attorney Michael L. Carver.
Mr. Carver has handled well over a thousand matters as an Attorney, including over 120 cases filed as class actions. Our office handles matters including civil rights violations, class actions, construction law, personal injury, unfair business practices and victims rights. We represent clients in cases in the California Courts, the United States District Courts of California and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal.
Mr. Carver is a member of several Attorney organizations: the Butte County Bar Association, Sacramento County Bar Association, Los Angeles County Bar Association and the California Employment Lawyers Association. We understand that injury-related problems can be stressful. We carefully examine each client’s situation and determine the most appropriate course of action.
The materials on this Internet site have been prepared by the Law Offices of Michael L. Carver for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice
or legal services. Information you submit is confidential. Your use of this Website does not create an attorney-client relationship between the Law Offices of Michael L. Carver, or their
attorneys, and you. You should not act upon any information provided over the Internet without seeking professional legal advice. This website should not be viewed as an offer to perform
legal services in any jurisdiction. The law referenced in this site is applicable in California only.