Are class action lawsuits worth it?

UPDATED: Jan 17, 2014

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Are class action lawsuits worth it?

A few years ago, my husband had a horrific accident while using a table saw. He severed 3 fingers and underwent numerous surgeries to reattach, then remove the fingers. I have heard there is a lawsuit against the manufacturers because the injury could have been prevented using new technology. I have heard that after the lawyer contingency fees (40%), numerous fees and charges and subrogation to our insurance company, he will be left with a minimal settlement. Are these types of lawsuits worth the effort?

Asked on January 17, 2014 under Personal Injury, Minnesota


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If someone suffered a minor injury, then they are usually worth it--since in that case, the person probably would not have broughty any suit on his/her own, so anything they get from the class action suit is a bonus. If someone suffers as serious an injury as your husband suffered, however, then if it seems that the other side would be liable (e.g. built a defective product), it's usually a better idea for that person to bring his or her own suit. You and your husband should meet with a personal injury or products liability attorney to see if it would be worth suing on your own.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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