There are two main ways of defining the group members in a class action. These include:

  1. the opt-out model – this means that the class action is commenced without the express consent of group members and anyone who meets certain criteria is considered to be a group member and will be bound by any judgment or settlement. At some stage during proceedings group members will be provided with the opportunity to “opt out” if they do not wish to be a group member or want to pursue their own individual claim.
  2. the opt-in model – this is essentially the opposite to the “opt out model” in that group members must indicate that they want to be a part of the class action. As such, only those group members who have “opted in” to the class action will be bound by the judgment or settlement.

The opt-out model is the approach adopted in NSW.

Class closure

In a class action, the Court is able to make orders to close a class. This means that group members in a class action have to register to receive certain rights and entitlements. For example, a class may be closed prior to a mediation to help facilitate a settlement. This is because class closure enables the parties have certainty with respect to the number of people in the class and also specific details as to the group member’s injuries, loss and/or damage.

It is important that group members in a class action keep up to date with any notices that are distributed because failure to opt out or to register in the event of class closure may significantly affect the rights and entitlements of a group member. For example, if class closure occurs and a group member does not opt out and does not register, they may not be entitled to share in any settlement but may still be bound by it.

Class Action against The Cosmetic Institute

Turner Freeman is acting for hundreds of women, on a “no win, no fee” basis, who have suffered from major complications as a result of surgery in a class action against The Cosmetic Institute and others. You may be considered as a group member in the Cosmetic Institute class action if you satisfy the following criteria:

  1. You must have undergone surgery with The Cosmetic Institute, either at one of their own facilities or at one of their licenced hospitals (Concord Private Hospital, Holroyd Hospital or Southport Day Surgery); and
  2. You must have suffered an “injury”.

In any class action, it is important that you put your hand up to be counted. For this reason, we invite you to register your interest in the class action against The Cosmetic Institute and others with Turner Freeman Lawyers. Following your registration, one of our lawyers will be in touch with you.

If you have any questions, you can contact Sally Gleeson, Medical Negligence Partner on (02) 8222 3333.