We provide litigation support in each of our practice areas – antitrust, forensic accounting, breach of contract and torts, medical malpractice and personal injury, and econometric consulting – at each of the four stages of the litigation process:
- CLASS CERTIFICATION
Class action litigation presents unique challenges to all participants. At the certification stage, with “merits-based” questions ostensibly off the table, analysts seek to determine whether the key questions of impact and damages can be examined using common methods, or whether these questions (or perhaps their answers) are individualized and, therefore, uninformative for the class more generally. This is a complex and contentious area, with the legal standards in flux.
Proof that a violation has occurred is the first step in the resolution of a claim. Defendants can plead guilty, forensic experts can opine whether relevant reporting requirements were violated, and witnesses can offer oral testimony. Documentary evidence, especially in the digital era, is often of fundamental importance in establishing the effect of a violation. But analysis of documents is not the domain of economics. We specialize in economic proofs of liability, which complement the other forms of evidence, and provide important and unique insights into how to weigh and interpret other forms of evidence.
Proof of impact is often evasive. Even with liability established, how does one determine whether defendants’ attempted misconduct causally and materially affected plaintiff’s economic well-being? Unlike liability for misconduct, which often requires analysis of forensic or documentary evidence, proof of impact is most often statistical. In particular, are plaintiffs significantly worse off in the “actual world”, i.e., given the alleged attempt to harm them than they would be in a statistically constructed, hypothetical “but-for world in which defendant’s conduct has not occurred?”
Liability and Impact are binary (either/or) outcomes. Damages analyses extend these findings to a determination of the quantitative extent of harm. The central question here is how much worse the plaintiff’s economic situation is in the actual world (with the defendant’s conduct) relative to a relevant “but-for” world.