Defense counsel retained Cornerstone Research to assess the economic merits of the plaintiffs’ proposed class in a case of alleged breach of fiduciary duty.
Retained by Morgan, Lewis & Bockius
Defense counsel retained Cornerstone Research to assess the economic merits of the plaintiffs’ proposed class in a case of alleged breach of fiduciary duty. Chief Judge James E. Gritzner of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa issued an order denying the plaintiffs’ motion for class certification, citing the analyses and conclusions in our expert’s two reports.
The case involved a withdrawal limitation implemented by a commercial real estate fund managed by the defendants, Principal Real Estate Investors. The plaintiffs alleged that the limitation was a result of the failure to properly manage the account’s liquidity and had a uniformly negative impact on investors.
The judge issued an order denying the plantiffs’ motion for class certification.
Our expert refuted the plaintiffs’ claims, noting the costs associated with providing additional liquidity and highlighting the obstacles to calculating damages on a class-wide basis created by differences in the timing of investors’ investments and withdrawal requests and in their alternative investment selections. In his rebuttal report, our expert challenged the opposing experts’ contention that the withdrawal limitation could have been avoided and pointed out the flaws and inconsistencies in their damages approach.
Judge Gritzner wrote that the class proposed by the plaintiffs “failed to meet the requirements of Rule 23(a) and (b) due to the individualized issues pervasive among putative class members’ liability and damages claims.”