Bartlit Beck Wins CAFA Appeal in 7th Circuit for Northwestern Mutual

November 2012

In LaPlant v. Northwestern Mutual the United States Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit issued an important ruling involving jurisdiction under the Class Action Fairness Act.

The state trial court had certified a class action and then ruled for plaintiffs after a bench trial which our firm did not handle. Plaintiffs moved the state court to expand its rulings to a nationwide class, and we removed the case to federal district court. After removal to federal court, plaintiffs sought remand to state court which the federal district court granted on the ground that the case fell within the corporate governance exception to the Act because the case solely involved the internal affairs of our client and because Wisconsin law governed all claims.

We successfully petitioned the 7th Circuit to allow and appeal and, after briefing and argument, the Court held for our client on all grounds. David Boies argued the appeal for plaintiffs. Adam Hoeflich, Sean Grimsley and John Hughes represented Northwestern Mutual.

Click here to read 7th Circuit Opinion

Click here for audio of Oral Argument

Click here for the American Lawyer article

Click here to read Bloomberg article