Category Archives 10th Circuit

CAFA provides for federal jurisdiction over class actions if the amount “in controversy” exceeds $5 million. This is not always a complicated exercise, with the calculation often resting on the total potential number of class members multiplied by the amount of individual damages.  But what about when the class definition requires an additional, fact-intensive inquiry, thus realistically reducing the actual number of class members—and, as a result, the total amount of damages truly “in controversy”?  The Tenth Circuit faced this question in Hammond v. Stamps.com, 844 F.3d 909 (10th Cir. 2016), concluding in a published opinion that the total “conceivab[le]” damages are what matters, not what the plaintiff will likely be able to prove. For a $15.99 monthly fee, Stamps.com allows subscribers to print postage from home. According to Ms. Hammond, the site fails to adequately disclose the subscription charges, leading her to erroneously believe that she would only be…

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