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How do class action lawsuits work?

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According to Dave Roos for HowStuffWorks, class action lawsuits are a type of lawsuit in which a large group of individuals claim to have suffered from similar damages or injuries from a single organization or company. A case is made stronger if more than one person claims to have been wronged by the same organization or company.

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Roos notes that in class action lawsuits, there is always a lead plaintiff, also known as a representative plaintiff, who has his name and only his name attached to a specific case. An example of a common type of class action lawsuit is product liability. If a faulty product leads to several injuries or accidents, a federal judge may decide to include all U.S. residents in the scope of the case who owned that specific product within a specific time frame.

One of the biggest advantages of class action lawsuits is that they allow several individuals to receive the settlement they deserve without having to endure the legal cost of bringing a lawsuit against someone. Another benefit of filing a class action lawsuit, as opposed to several separate lawsuits, is that class action lawsuits ensure that everyone receives an equal payment without worrying about the company or organization going bankrupt before the plaintiffs can be paid, reports Roos.

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