Tuesday, August 08, 2006

But Do They Take American Express?

Earlier this week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed the March 2004 dismissal of the consolidated amended complaint in the In re American Express Co. Sec. Litig.

The Second Circuit's opinion is available here.

Judge Ralph K. Winter writing for the Court, found that certain claims in the amended complaint that were not alleged in the initial complaint nonetheless related back to the original complaint, and thus were not time-barred.

Noting that the there was some confusion as to the proper standard for appellate review of a district court's determination regarding relation back under Fed. R. Civ. P. 15, the Court held:
In our view, the relation back issue is more analogous to a dismissal on the pleadings than a balancing of factors involving the conduct of a lawsuit. If facts provable under the amended complaint arose out of the conduct alleged in the original complaint, relation back is mandatory. The proper standard of review of Rule 15(c)(2) decisions is therefore de novo and we so hold.
Milberg Weiss Bershad & Schulman LLP and Lovell Stewart & Halebian LLP are co-lead counsel in the American Express litigation. Milberg Weiss issued this press release regarding the Second Circuit's decision.

The District Court's original opinion is available here.

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