The New Professional Plaintiffs in Shareholder Litigation

Jessica Erickson

University of Richmond School of Law

October 15, 2013

Florida Law Review, Vol. 65, No. 1089, 2013

In 1995, Congress solved the problem of professional plaintiffs in shareholder litigation — or so it thought. The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (PSLRA) was designed to end the influence of shareholder plaintiffs who had little or no connection to the underlying suit. Yet it may have failed to accomplish its goal. In the wake of the PSLRA, many professional plaintiffs simply moved into other types of corporate lawsuits. In shareholder derivative suits and acquisition class actions across the country, professional plaintiffs are back. They are repeat filers involved in dozens of lawsuits. They are the attorneys’ spouses, parents, and children. They may even be entities created for the primary purpose of filing litigation. These new professional plaintiffs have flown almost entirely under the radar of corporate law scholarship. This Article pulls back the curtain on professional plaintiffs, examining court filings and other public records in the first comprehensive study of professional plaintiffs’ role in corporate law. In most instances, professionalism is a good thing — but not when it comes to choosing plaintiffs.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 50

Keywords: professional plaintiffs, shareholder litigation, corporate governance, shareholder derivative suits, delaware lawsuits, class actions, merger litigation

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Date posted: October 17, 2013  

Suggested Citation

Erickson, Jessica, The New Professional Plaintiffs in Shareholder Litigation (October 15, 2013). Florida Law Review, Vol. 65, No. 1089, 2013. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2340550

Contact Information

Jessica Erickson (Contact Author)
University of Richmond School of Law ( email )
28 Westhampton Way
Richmond, VA 23173
United States
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