Foreign Securities Class Actions in U.S. Federal Court

Der nachfolgende Artikel befasst sich mit den zunehmend dreisteren Versuchen von US-Anwälten, Sachverhalte, die keinen Bezug zu den USA aufweisen, vor US-Gerichte zu zerren – ein neues lukratives Geschäftsfeld mancher US-Prozessanwälte. Vorrangiges Ziel ist nicht, Recht zu suchen, sondern eine Möglichkeit, möglichst viel Geld zu verdienen.

Recent years have seen a wave of securities class actions filed by foreign plaintiffs in U.S. courts seeking damages relating to securities that they purchased on non-U.S. exchanges in companies incorporated outside the U.S.. What brought these cases to the United States? The entrepreneurial activity of plaintiffs’ lawyers seeking to expand their “market.” Not content with bringing cases involving purchases of securities within the United States, these lawyers want to represent the entire world – and inflict on already-crowded United States courts lawsuits that have little or nothing to do with this country.

Recent Supreme Court Decision

The U.S. Supreme Court recently dealt with this issue in Morrison v. National Australia Bank, LTD. The Court correctly held that Section 10(b) of the Exchange Act does not provide a cause of action to foreign plaintiffs suing foreign and American defendants for misconduct in connection with securities traded on foreign exchanges.

The Supreme Court highlighted the longstanding principle of American law “that legislation of Congress, unless a contrary intent appears, is meant to apply only within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.”

That means ordinary Americans who trade in the United States are fully protected – the decision protects Americans trading in the U.S. against fraudulent conduct from abroad: “the focus of the Exchange Act is not upon the place where the deception originated, but upon purchases or sales of securities in the United States.”

Some say that U.S. pension funds will be harmed by this rule ...

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