Class Actions Are Generally Not Permitted Under the Robinson-Patman Act - List of Decisions

First Posted: October 26, 1999; Last Update: October 26, 1999

There is a long line of decisions in the federal courts denying class-action treatment to Robinson-Patman Act claims. See discussion in Related Article about 1 Store, 1 Suit, No RPA Class Actions.

There is always some room for carving out a single issue or two relating to the overall RPA claims of a group which might be litigated as a class action, which could be treated as a class action. But the trial for and award of money would have to be in separate actions, making the class action treatment a waste of effort, expense and time, even if allowed. For example, the manufacturer's relationship to its majority-owned wholesalers might be relevant to all (1,000) RPA suits, and this issue could be resolved as a class, but the rest of the claims (including the proof of differing prices, rebates, effect on competition for the individual plaintiff, amount of loss suffered by the plaintiff) have to go forward in individual cases.

The list of cases holding or stating that class action treatment for RPA cases should be denied follows:

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Copyright © 1999 by Carl E. Person