Class actions are important because people who otherwise don’t have the resources to bring a lawsuit can nonetheless be compensated. But from a defending company’s perspective, it can also mean that the heightened sense of systematic wrong-doing may lead to inflated damages or punitive damages.
The newswires are all abuzz with the recently certification of a class action for gender discrimination against GE. The potential class members include female entry-level executives and female lawyers (the class representative is a lawyer). There is, of course, still the discovery and trial itself to get through, but certification is a big first hurdle.
What does this do for GE’s public image? Nothing good, I’m sure.