Class-Action Settlement Conference (Invitation Only)

July 23-24, 2015
Crystal City Marriott Hotel

The Duke Law Center for Judicial Studies is holding an invitation-only conference on class actions in Washington DC on July 23-24, 2015.  If you are interested in an invitation to this conference, please send a description of your experience in litigating class actions and your reasons for attending the conference to

For the past twelve months, the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules has been seriously considering amending Rule 23 to address class-action settlement issues.  The Committee's reporters have developed a conceptual draft of amendments to Rule 23, which the Committee will consider at its April 9-10, 2015, meeting.  The purpose of the July 23-24 conference is to draw out empirical and anecdotal information, which supports or challenges the proposals in the Committee's conceptual draft or which suggests alternative approaches.  The Advisory Committee meets again on November 5-6, 2015, when it will reconsider the proposals in light of its ongoing study, including the input from our conference.

Active interaction and discussions between judges, practitioners, and law professors in an intimate environment is a key component of every Duke Law’s Distinguished Lawyers Conference.  Members of the Civil Rules Committee will be invited as well as a significant number of other federal judges.  A total of 15 federal judges, at a minimum, will attend the conference.  This is an opportunity for counsel experienced in class actions to work with the judiciary and help shape the future of class-action procedure and jurisprudence.

The following judges have agreed to attend the conference:

Hon. Jon Newman (2nd Cir.)                                      Hon. D. Brooks Smith (3rd Cir.)
Hon. Jeffrey Sutton (6th Cir.)                                      Hon. Jeremy Fogel (Federal Judicial Center)
Hon. Lorna Schofield (S.D.N.Y.)                                 Hon. William Young (D. Mass.)
Hon. John Bates (D.D.C.)                                          Hon. Robert Dow (N.D. Ill.)
Hon. Michael Baylson (E.D. Pa.)                                Hon. Jan Adler (S.D. Cal.)
Hon. Gene Pratter (E.D. Pa.)                                     Hon. Paul Diamond (E.D. Pa.)
Hon. Craig Shaffer (D. Colo.)                                     Hon. Lee Rosenthal (S.D. Tex.)
Hon. Carolyn Kuhl (Superior Court Cal.)                    Hon. William Highberger (Superior Court Cal.)

Six panels have been formed to address: (1) criteria for certifying a class-action settlement; (2) criteria for approving a class-action settlement; (3) standards governing fairness of attorney’s fees in class actions; (4) Rule 23(c)(4) issue classes; (5) class-action objectors; and (6) ancillary issues, including cy pres awards, ascertainability standard, Rule 68, and notice.

The conference is part of the Duke Conference Bench-Bar-Academy Distinguished Lawyers' series, which is led by the Judicial Studies Center Advisory Council of litigation heads of 14 major corporations and 10 prominent plaintiff and defense lawyers. (

The conference is held under the Chatham House Rule: "When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed."

CLE ─ Nine (9) credit hours have been applied for in North Carolina.  If you are a practicing attorney in North Carolina, your CLE hours will be submitted for you.  Attorneys from other states will receive a "Certificate of Attendance" and a completed "Uniform Application for Accreditation" form after the conference in order to submit CLE hours for their state.