Advisen Report Says Corporate, Securities Litigation Filing Reached 'Crescendo' In First Quarter

Advisen Report Says Corporate, Securities Litigation Filing Reached 'Crescendo' In First Quarter


Corporate and securities litigation filing activity reached a "crescendo" in the first quarter of 2011, according to the most recent quarterly report from Advisen, the insurance information firm. The filing rate in the year's first three months if annualized would represent a record -settling annual level of corporate and securities litigation activity. A copy of the Advisen report can be found here. My own survey of the first quarter 2011 securities class action lawsuits filings can be found here.

Preliminary Notes

In considering the Advisen report, it is critically important to recognize that the report uses its own unique vocabulary to describe certain of the litigation categories.

The "securities" litigation analyzed in the Advisen report includes not only securities class action litigation, but a broad collection of other types of suits as well, including regulatory and enforcement actions, individual actions, derivative actions, collective actions filed outside the U.S. and allegations of breach of fiduciary duty. All of these various kinds of lawsuits, whether or not involving alleged violations of the securities laws, are referred to in the aggregate in the Advisen report as "securities suits."

One subset of the overall collection of "securities suits" is a category denominated as "securities fraud" lawsuits, which includes a combination of both regulatory and enforcement actions, on the one hand, and private securities lawsuits brought as individual actions, on the other hand. However, the category of "securities fraud" lawsuits does NOT include private securities class action lawsuits, which are in their own separate category ("SCAS").

Due to these unfamiliar usages and the confusing similarity of category names, considerable care is required in reading the report.

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Read other items of interest from the world of directors & officers liability, with occasional commentary, at the D&O Diary, a blog by Kevin LaCroix.

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