Almost half of GCs across the country are anticipating an uptick in class actions concerning consumer fraud and privacy, according to a recent study.

Carlton Fields, a Tampa Bay-based law firm, recently surveyed GCs and CLOs from more than 300 companies in a variety of industries to gauge their inclinations on future litigation trends. Forty-five percent of the survey’s respondents said they see consumer fraud and privacy suits comprising the next wave of class actions. Just a year ago, only 15 percent of respondents said they were anticipating an influx of such suits. The increase is likely due to recent news about corporate data breaches and food labeling suits.

Some other findings from Carlton Fields’ survey include:

  • Companies spent $671,100 annually per class action in 2012, which is a 14 percent drop from what they spent in 2011
  • Companies expect to spend an average of $3.3 million defending class actions this year
  • Companies are using an average of three law firms to defend class actions, which is a decrease from the average of 4.6 firms they used in 2011

For more recent InsideCounsel coverage about class actions, read:

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Securities class actions decline in 2012

Supreme Court’s Amgen decision makes it easier for shareholders to bring class actions

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FLSA class action strategy seeks to moot cases

Class actions expected to rise this year