The key difference between mass torts and class actions has to do with how, procedurally, the large group of plaintiffs is treated. Mass torts often involve injuries to a distinct group of individuals who may reside in the same geographic area. The number of people injured in mass tort cases are sometimes smaller than those injured in larger class actions. With mass torts each plaintiff, even though they are part of a large group, is treated as an individual. In a class action the large group of plaintiffs, known collectively as the class, are represented by a class representative, who stands in for the rest of the class. This means all members of the class are treated as one plaintiff, not separately.
DRD data explores 28 different arbitration/mediation case types.
These case type definitions have been created based on extensive work with our data contributors.