Ganders resist sauce

In class-action suits, the plaintiffs receive something nominal and the lawyers receive a bundle. And don’t you dare mess with that system:

A retired Los Angeles County judge who ordered that a lawyer be paid in $10 gift cards from a women’s fashion store as part of a legal settlement was censured Tuesday and barred from presiding over future court cases.

The Commission on Judicial Performance accused Brett C. Klein of showing bias, abusing his authority and “grandstanding to the press” in a class-action lawsuit that he briefly presided over last year.

The lawsuit was brought by a woman who accused a clothing store chain of violating privacy laws by asking for personal identification information when customers used credit cards to make purchases. As part of a settlement, which had been given preliminary approval by a different judge, the two sides agreed that Windsor Fashions would pay the customer who brought the suit $2,500 and her attorney $125,000. Other customers who came forward as part of the suit would each be given a $10 gift voucher.

Fark attached a HERO tag to this one, and rightfully so.



  1. fillyjonk »

    4 February 2010 · 7:23 am

    NOOOO. That judge is awesome. He should not have been censured.

    I’ve been in on a few of these things (I think one was the infamous “CDs were overpriced” suit). I think I’ve made a total of about $8 over the years. I don’t want to think about what the attorneys involved made.

  2. Moira Breen »

    4 February 2010 · 11:45 am

    Never have figured out why these sorts of shakedowns are allowed. My husband used to get so angry when we received notices from these parasites (always about some product or service we’d forgotten ever buying or using), he would go to the trouble of filling in the refusal form and expressing his high opinion of the firm in an addendum.

    Seems like being involuntarily included in some jerks’ looting spree – and if it requires an active “opt out” it ain’t voluntary – ought to be actionable, in itself.

  3. McGehee »

    4 February 2010 · 5:11 pm

    Never have figured out why these sorts of shakedowns are allowed.

    Because laws are written by lawyers.

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