U.S. Supreme Court says state courts may continue to hear securities class actions

March 22, 2018 by

In an important decision for investors, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on March 20, 2018, that state courts can continue to hear certain securities class actions brought under federal law.

In the unanimous decision, the court said that amendments to the federal Securities Act of 1933 do not give the federal courts exclusive jurisdiction over covered class actions brought under the law.

In the matter of Cyan Inc. v. Beaver County Employees Retirement Fund, a unanimous high court said that amendments to the federal Securities Act of 1933 do not in fact give the federal courts exclusive jurisdiction over covered class actions brought under the law. Instead, the court held that Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 1998 (“SLUSA”) still allowed state courts to retain concurrent jurisdiction over securities claims that involve 50 or more plaintiffs.

“SLUSA did nothing to strip state courts of their longstanding jurisdiction to adjudicate class actions brought under the 1933 Act,” Justice Elena Kagan wrote for the unanimous court.

The case is Cyan Inc. et al. v. Beaver County Employees Retirement Fund et al., case number 15-1439, in the Supreme Court of the United States.

Steve Larson
An experienced trial lawyer who handles both hourly and contingent fee cases, Steve has expertise in class actions, consumer cases, antitrust litigation, securities litigation, corporate disputes, intellectual property disputes, unfair competition claims, employment matters, and disputes involving family wealth. Steve regularly represents individuals and businesses in federal and state court and has obtained class-wide recovery in multiple class actions. A veteran practitioner, Steve's clients value his creative approach to resolving complex litigation matters.

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