Muddying the Waters: The Downstream Implications of Wal-Mart v. Dukes for Medical Monitoring Class Actions in Missouri
7 Pittsburgh J. Envtl. & Pub. Health L. 305 (2013)
46 Pages Posted: 7 Jun 2013 Last revised: 21 Jun 2013
Date Written: June 6, 2013
In 2011, in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, the United States Supreme Court heightened scrutiny of class certification under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 23(a)(2)'s commonality requirement and imposed a strict injunctive standard for relief sought under FRCP Rule 23(b)(2). In 2007, the Missouri Supreme Court followed several other states in acknowledging that claimants tortiously exposed to toxins may seek medical monitoring for latent disease in a class action. Although state courts are not bound by federal procedural rules, class actions increasingly invoke federal jurisdiction, and this Article attempts to analyze the likely implications of Dukes for toxic exposure class actions. Further, using Missouri as a benchmark, this Article provides suggestions for bolstering the chances of recovery for toxic exposure claimants facing removal to federal courts.
Keywords: Muddying the Waters, Rachel Guthrie, class actions, medical monitoring, torts, toxic torts, Rule 26, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Wal-Mart v. Dukes, Dukes, certification, latent disease, federal courts, Supreme Court, Missouri, Missouri Supreme Court, Meyer ex rel Coplin v. Fluor Corp., FRCP
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