A class action lawsuit, described in layman’s terms is a suit filed jointly by plaintiffs against a common defendant that alleges the same complain for all of the plaintiffs.
Here is an example: if a housing estate is constructed near a spring that has bad water and then this water is distributed to the homes and causes illnesses to the people who live in the estate, they can come together under one common suit and sue the owner of the estate and anybody else who was involved in the construction of the estate, the piping of the water and even those who knew that the spring was poisoned and didn’t speak up.
Class action suits, in their nature are hard to put together, and they take a long time at trial. In fact, it is only in recent years that class action suits take a shorter time to try. The reason for delay is that there is usually a lot of data to be collected, a lot of evidence, witnesses, experts and so on.
One of the most common reasons for class action trials today is mesothelioma, a kind of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos. A lot of property owners and employers let their workers or tenants continue to live in areas where the presence of asbestos is known.
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