Vol. LIII No. 5

Going Dutch: The Effects of Domestic Restriction and Foreign Acceptance of Class Litigation on American Securities Fraud Plaintiffs

Abstract: This Note examines the intersection of two recent trends in aggregate litigation in the United States and Europe. In the United States, Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court have significantly restricted the utility of the class action mechanism, leaving many American plaintiffs with legitimate claims without recourse in the United States. Simultaneously, the European Union and its Member States have considered and implemented new mechanisms to facilitate the resolution of mass claims. The Netherlands employs a particularly useful aggregate litigation system. As a result of these two trends, this Note argues that Americans with securities fraud claims, who find themselves shut out of American courts, should seek redress in the Netherlands under the Dutch Settlement Act. This Note posits that American courts are likely to give res judicata effect to such judgments, and, barring a preemptive trans-European system of collective redress, the Netherlands is a viable alternative to U.S. federal courts for resolving securities fraud claims.

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