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Class action defense raises a special set of strategic and tactical considerations. Our team has the experience to help our clients navigate them: We’ve successfully defended more than 400 class actions, including 150 wage and hour class actions and over 100 securities class actions in U.S. federal and state courts.

From bet-the-company litigation to routine but still potentially costly suits, we work with our clients’ in-house teams to understand the objectives for each matter and formulate effective defense strategies, including for industry leaders: Microsoft, Twitter, Johnson & Johnson, PwC, and PayPal.

We’ve defended class actions in all 50 states. Our team includes class action and group litigation lawyers in all our U.S. offices and the U.K., handling a variety of claims:

  • Antitrust matters on behalf of Microsoft, Delta Dental of California, NTC and Nanya Technology Corporation USA, DHL, and Aland Jiangsu Nutraceutical Co.
  • Commercial litigation for DISH Network, Johnson & Johnson, a U.S. Public University System, NVIDIA Corporation, and the NCAA.
  • Employment actions for Sephora, Williams-Sonoma, Crate & Barrel, Instacart, Stitch Fix, Chico’s, Genentech, Roche, Microsoft, Twitter, Oracle, Electronic Arts, Intuit, Nvidia, Morgan Stanley and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
  • Privacy and cybersecurity matters for Acuant, Arby’s, Zoosk, Donnelly Financial, GameFly, Twitter, and Nordstrom.
  • Securities and shareholder derivative actions representing PayPal, LendingClub, Microsoft, Seattle Genetics Inc., and Cardiovascular Systems Inc. 
  • Antitrust

    • Microsoft. Orrick teams have represented Microsoft for more than 20 years in antitrust litigation and government investigations throughout the U.S., Canada, EU and Asia. We have defended Microsoft in more than 140+ U.S. class actions filed in U.S. federal and state courts, including three cases that went to trial. We’ve also represented Microsoft in defending against class action antitrust litigation valued at more than US$4B filed by Pro-Sys Consultants in British Columbia, Canada. This was one of the first and most high-profile indirect purchaser class actions to proceed to trial in Canada, and is the first case to do so based solely on unilateral conduct. We helped achieve a favorable settlement.
    • Delta Dental of California. We represent Delta Dental of California and other Delta Dental entities in several litigations, including the In re Delta Dental Antitrust Litigation, a multi-district litigation brought by a putative nationwide class of providers challenging the structure of the Delta Dental system throughout the United States.
    • Nanya. We represented NTC and Nanya Technology Corporation USA (NTC USA) in $4-billion-plus DRAM antitrust price-fixing litigation, that included grand jury proceedings, a direct purchaser class in the U.S., an indirect purchaser class in the U.S., opt-out litigation, and proceedings in Europe, Canada, and Brazil. NTC was the only defendant to be awarded summary judgment (for direct purchaser action). NTC USA settled the direct purchaser actions pre-trial. We successfully settled the indirect purchaser and opt-out cases for NTC and NTC USA.
    • DHL. Orrick represented DHL, the largest global freight forwarder in the world and a major logistics provider, as an opt-out plaintiff against more than 20 major global airlines relating to alleging price fixing of air freight services relating to the air cargo cartel. We helped DHL obtain a substantial premium over what it would have received had it stayed in the individual class action settlements with the more than 20 airlines.
    • Aland Jiangsu Nutraceutical Co. We represented Aland Jiangsu Nutraceutical Co., one of the four major Chinese manufacturers of vitamin C, in In re Vitamin C Antitrust Litigation, the first-ever antitrust case in the U.S. courts against Chinese companies. The case, a class action, was based on allegations that the manufacturers fixed the price of vitamin C exported to the U.S. Orrick negotiated a favorable settlement for Aland – the jury found the non-settling defendants liable, and judgment was entered for more than 15 times Aland’s settlement amount.

    Complex Litigation and Product Liability Class Actions

    • Johnson & Johnson. We’ve had numerous successes, trial wins and significant settlements for J&J in its high-profile talc litigation, including a Prop 65 case in California that the plaintiffs dropped shortly before trial with an order to reimburse J&J for close to $600,000 in legal fees. In another significant win, the Orrick team convinced a federal judge to dismiss with prejudice a consumer class action alleging that J&J misled consumers in connection with its marketing of talc products.
    • Public University System. We are representing a public university system in numerous class action cases brought by students seeking fee and tuition refunds following the shift to remote instruction in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • NVIDIA Corporation. We defended NVIDIA against allegations that it violated consumer protection laws by providing defective components to computer makers. We made new law arguing against class certification, which prompted resolution of the case. Our team also secured dismissal of a related securities class action.
    • NCAA. We serve as national trial counsel for the NCAA in its student-athlete concussion litigation defending against allegations of negligence, breach of express and implied contract, fraudulent concealment, and in some cases, loss of consortium in courts across the country, including in California, Indiana, Oregon, Hawaii and Washington, D.C.

    Wage and Hour

    • Worldwide clothing and accessories retailer. We obtained a very favorable settlement on behalf of the client in a class action matter that alleged a variety of wage and hour claims.
    • Williams-Sonoma. We represented the client in a wage and hour class action on behalf of a class of exempt store managers with wage and hour claims.
    • PricewaterhouseCoopers. We prevailed in multiple wage-and-hour class actions on behalf of our client PwC, in matters attacking the classification of thousands of staff members.

    Discrimination

    • Microsoft. We won Silicon Valley’s most closely watched employment case when we defeated an effort to certify a nationwide gender discrimination class action of more than 8,600 female Microsoft employees claiming discrimination in Microsoft’s pay and promotion practices. The decision was a 68-page endorsement of our legal arguments and was fully affirmed on appeal.
    • Twitter. We defeated a gender class action attempting to certify a class of the company’s female software engineers alleging Twitter’s promotion process adversely impacts women. The denial of class certification was affirmed on appeal.

    Privacy and Cybersecurity

    • Acuant. We represented Acuant, Inc. in a privacy class action pending in the Northern District of Illinois alleging Acuant violated the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) in connection with Acuant’s development and licensing of identity verification technologies.
    • Arby’s. We are representing Arby’s in defending against consumer and financial institution class actions in the Northern District of Georgia arising from a cybersecurity incident that potentially exposed the credit card details of thousands of consumers. We obtained favorable early settlement of consumer class claims and await court approval of a favorable settlement of the issuer class claims.
    • Spark Network and Zoosk. We represented Spark Network and Zoosk in incident response, customer and regulator notification, and defense of a class action brought in the Northern District of California relating to a data security incident announced in early 2020.
    • Donnelly Financial Services. We represented Donnelly Financial in defending a class action brought in the Southern District of New York relating to a data security incident suffered by a third-party contractor that was announced in 2019.
    • GameFly. We represented GameFly in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) class action in the Northern District of Illinois based on alleged misuse of customer contact information in mobile advertisements. We obtained favorable settlement of all claims.
    • Twitter. Our team represented Twitter in defending a privacy class action brought in the Western District of Washington alleging Twitter violated a Washington state law and unlawfully collected and sold user’s telephone numbers. The matter is still ongoing.
    • Nordstrom. We represented Nordstrom, Inc. in two class actions filed in the Central District of California brought by former employees who were notified by Nordstrom that their personal information may have been mishandled by a former contract worker. We successfully compelled arbitration in the first-filed action, after which each plaintiff filed a notice of voluntary dismissal of their claims.

    Securities Litigation and Shareholder Derivative Actions

    • PayPal. Orrick team members achieved multiple victories in securities class actions filed against the company and its top executives. Our defense team secured three walkaways for PayPal in a 12-month period.
    • LendingClub. We are representing LendingClub and its directors and officers in a securities class action and a shareholder derivative action alleging violations of federal securities laws and breaches of fiduciary duties arising out of LendingClub’s compliance with the FTC Act.
    • Microsoft. We represent Microsoft in several securities and shareholder derivative lawsuits alleging breaches of fiduciary duties in connection with Microsoft’s alleged violation of a European Commission antitrust consent decree. We also represent Microsoft as a defendant and third-party recipient of subpoenas in Delaware litigation alleging Microsoft aided and abetted Michael Dell’s breaches of fiduciary duty in taking Dell Computers private.
    • Seattle Genetics Inc. Orrick is representing Seattle Genetics in multiple shareholder suits in connection with its $600 million acquisition of Cascadian Therapeutics, Inc. Four separate class action lawsuits were filed by multiple shareholders and law firms in federal courts in Delaware and Washington, alleging that the proxy disclosures were materially misleading and violated the anti-fraud provisions in Section 14 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. 
    • Cardiovascular Systems Inc.  For the second time, a Minnesota federal judge dismissed a securities class action lawsuit against client Cardiovascular Systems Inc. (CSI), once again siding with an Orrick team’s arguments that there is no factual basis to sustain the allegations of securities fraud.