The United Kingdom has experienced a sharp rise in legal actions against companies – especially in the technology sector.
According to the BBC, research by Thomson Reuters reveals the amount of money being claimed through ‘class actions’ has leapt from £4bn in 2021 to £26bn in 2022.
A legal decision in 2020 allowed collective proceedings against the likes of Apple, Google and Sony.
It means that single claimants could now bring legal actions on behalf of potentially huge numbers of people without their express mandate or even knowledge, unless they specifically opted out, Pinsent Masons LLP partner Alan Davis.
David told the BBC: “In Europe, only two other jurisdictions – the Netherlands and Portugal – offer the possibility of such ‘opt-out’ class actions, which explains the increasing popularity of the UK as a venue.”
The Competition Appeals Tribunal (CAT) in the UK encouraged opt-out legal actions, after a £14bn class action against credit card giant Mastercard, amid claims high fees led to people paying too much in shops.