Class Action Alert

You too may be part of this class!

Nationwide Class of BAR/BRI Bar Review Customers Certified: Financial News - Yahoo! Finance
The class is comprised of all persons who purchased a bar review course from BAR/BRI Bar Review from August, 1997 to the present.

The suit, filed in May 2005 by former law students in California, Michigan and Louisiana, accuses defendant West Publishing Corp., d/b/a BAR/BRI of violating the federal antitrust laws and conspiring with defendant Kaplan, Inc. to prevent competition in the market for full-service bar review courses.

I hope that we get something good out of our lawsuit. Something useful, not a coupon for "$50 off your next bar review course."

11 comments:

  1. As we were taking the BarBri courses, all my friends and I talked about how, if we could just get motivated, we'd file just this sort of class action. Glad someone finally did it... even though, yeah, we'll probably wind up with a coupon for $20 off our next BarBri purchase or something equally useless.

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  2. Oh my gosh, the new legislation on class action settlements has a lot to say about coupon settlements. Just read the Senate Report for the bill. All that policy stuff. It's so exciting!
    (yeah, I'm a total complete nerd.)

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  3. I just got my Sprint settlement notice and the first option is something like $10 off if I sign up for another two-years of Sprint cellular service.

    The second option is a $5 calling card. I get better offers than these in direct mail advertising every month. Shouldn't my lawyers get me a better deal than Sprint's marketing department?

    Aaarg. There has got to be some kind of conflict with lawyers accepting cash payment for their efforts while settling for coupons on my behalf. Maybe we can sue them...

    Sorry for the rant. The coupon thing just set me off...

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  4. Exactly! And then, I'd like to see how many people end up even using the coupons. Even if you assume the company is "out" $10 for every $10 coupon used, how many are cashed in? Certainly not 100% of the coupons issued, or even close to that percentage.

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  5. Seriously guys, read Senate Report 109-14 on the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005. Starting on page 14, under the heading "Lawyers receive disproportionate shares of settlements" is an entire litany of abuses of the coupon settlement system.

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  6. Oh Georgiana, can't you just brief it for us? Please? I hate to read things that aren't blogs. =)

    Besides, I'm busy with illegal downloads and writing a review of Anonymous Lawyer.

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  7. Anyone know how to join the class? Can we still?

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  8. I didn't see anything about joining, so I thought maybe they're making Bar/Bri turn over their customer lists. Not sure. I'll post more if I find anything.

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  9. I used to work for Kaplan, and as far as I know, they partner with BAR/BRI to provide a discount to their LSAT course alums for a BAR/BRI course tailored to rising 1Ls that covers law school success strategies - and that is the extent of the relationship. It was always my understanding that Kaplan never entered the Bar Review market because it is so specialized. Content-based exams such as the USMLE (medical boards) and the NAPLEX (pharmacy boards) are standardized across the country and Kaplan provides prep for these exams. Bar exams vary by state. The research and development costs for Kaplan to enter this market would be extraordinarily and perhaps prohibitively high. West is a legal publisher, so they have the resources and expertise on hand to develop state-specific bar courses. Kaplan's business model isn't really structured to support this. The only regional exams they provide prep for are general knowledge based exams such as the SCIHIs (which I think are secondary school entry exams in NY).

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  10. Monica, since the class is comprised of all persons who purchased a bar review course from BAR/BRI from August 1997 to the present, and that describes you, aren't you automatically in the class unless you opt out? I don't remember much about class actions from Civ Pro, but that's how Rule 23 works, right?

    And the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 did put restrictions on coupon settlements. It requires a judge's approval after a hearing to determine if the settlement is fair and adequate. Also, before CAFA, the attorney's fees could be based on a percentage of the actual value of coupons that were given out. Now fees have to be based on either the value of coupons actually used, or the amount of time spent on the case.

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  11. http://tscgirl.blogspot.com/2011/02/bar-bri-class-action-update-wow-have.html

    Class Participants are actually getting PAID!

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