The U.S. Supreme Court has vacated a Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that enjoined any further filing of class actions in state court involving dryers with stainless steel drums and raising the same consumer fraud claims alleged in a putative class action that the Seventh Circuit refused to certify because individual issues predominated. Thorogood v. Sears, Roebuck & Co., No. 10-1087 (U.S., decision entered June 27, 2011). Additional details about the case appear in the November 11, 2010, issue of this Report.
In its two-sentence ruling granting the plaintiff’s petition for certiorari, the Court remanded the matter for further consideration in light of a related ruling this term. In that case, the Court held that a federal court may not enjoin state-court proceedings under the “relitigation exception” to the Anti-Injunction Act unless the issue the federal court decided is the same as the one presented before the state tribunal and the party seeking to certify the state-court action has the requisite connection to the federal suit to be bound by the federal court’s judgment.