University of Georgia School of Law Professor Thomas Kadri (above left) and McGill University Faculty of Law Professor Ignacio Cofone (above right) have published a chapter exploring a controversial procedural mechanism in privacy class actions.
The chapter, entitled “Cy Près Settlements in Privacy Class Actions,” was first featured in Class Actions in Privacy Law, a 2020 Routledge volume that Cofone edited. A Spanish translation recently was published, under the title “Acuerdos Cy Près en Acciones de Clase sobre Privacidad,” in 2 Revista Jurídica Austral 33 (2021).
Here’s the abstract for this chapter by Kadri and Cofone, as set out at SSRN:
This essay considers the potential for using cy près settlements in privacy class actions. These settlements are a procedural mechanism to overcome distribution challenges in class actions. When it is too burdensome to prove individual claims or too costly to distribute damages to class members, courts on occasions award damages to a charity or non-profit organization involved in work serving the class members’ interests. These controversial settlements have been gaining attention in various legal systems. The U.S. Supreme Court recently considered their propriety in Frank v. Gaos, while courts in Canada and several Latin American countries have been experimenting with cy près as well. The essay uses these cases to explore how this procedural mechanism can be particularly useful in privacy class actions. While cy près settlements require proper judicial supervision to prevent abuse, the chapter concludes that they can help to deter privacy invasions, enforce privacy laws, and provide plaintiffs with some measure of indirect relief when those laws are violated.