MDL Panel Denies Unopposed Motion to Centralize 2 Nissan Dashboard Class Actions

2009 Infiniti FX35 photographed in Washington,...
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The United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation declined to centralize pretrial proceedings in the In Re: Nissan North America, Inc., Infiniti Fx Dashboard Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2164, 715 F. Supp. 2d 1355 (June 3, 2010).  Nissan North America, Inc.  (Nissan) moved for centralized pretrial proceedings in two putative class actions, pending in two districts, alleging that the dashboards in two of its vehicle models were prone to unsightly bubbling.  Id. 1355.  The litigation consists of one action pending in the Western District of Missouri (Hope) and one action pending in the Eastern District of Texas.  Id. Plaintiffs in both actions supported Nissan’s motion. Id.

The Panel denied Nissan’s motions, finding a lack of overlapping classes and noting that the same attorneys represent plaintiffs in both actions:

There are only two actions in this docket. Although both are putative class actions, the Hope plaintiffs seek certification of a Missouri-wide class, while the Aaron plaintiff seeks certification of a Texas-wide class.  Thus, there are no overlapping classes.  In addition, the same attorneys represent plaintiffs in both actions.  While the actions do share some questions of fact regarding whether the dashboards of Infiniti FX35 and FX45 crossover vehicles are prone to unsightly bubbling, the parties have not convinced us that those questions are sufficiently complex and/or numerous to justify Section 1407 transfer at this time.  Alternatives to transfer exist that may minimize whatever possibilities there might be of duplicative discovery and/or inconsistent pretrial rulings.  See, e.g., In re Eli Lilly and Co. (Cephalexin Monohydrate) Patent Litigation, 446 F.Supp. 242, 244 (Jud.Pan.Mult.Lit.1978);  see also Manual for Complex Litigation, Fourth, s 20.14 (2004).

Id. Read the rest of this entry »

MDL Panel Transfers Google Street View Litigation to Northern District of California

Nürnberg Google Street View
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The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation transferred In re Google, Inc. Street View Electronic Communications Litigation, — F. Supp. 2d —-, 2010 WL 3303204 (U.S. Jud. Pan. Mult. Lit. Aug. 17, 2010) to the Northern District of California, assigned to Hon. James Ware.  The cases involve common factual questions arising out of allegations that Google intentionally intercepted electronic communications sent or received over class members’ open, non-secured wireless networks.

Plaintiffs in one District of District of Columbia action moved for coordinated or consolidated pretrial proceedings of this litigation in the District of District of Columbia. Plaintiffs in the other District of District of Columbia action and a potentially-related action supported the motion. Read the rest of this entry »