Class action lawsuit – What it is, definition and concept

The class action lawsuit is the legal instrument that initiates a judicial process with multiple plaintiffs, that is, several people decide to bring a similar problem to court through a single lawsuit in defense of collective interests.

When two or more people have a conflict against the same natural or legal person that has caused them the same type of damage and they intend to defend the same interests before a judge, they can initiate the judicial process through a class action lawsuit. This claim is nothing more than the means through which the legal action that usually seeks compensation for damages or compensation for damages is materialized.

The exercise of filing this action is a fundamental right that safeguards access to the courts in civil jurisdiction. Likewise, the party that receives the lawsuit containing the civil action that is filed against him, can answer this lawsuit, simply opposing it, or can answer by filing another action against the plaintiff.

The class action lawsuit is nothing more than an ordinary lawsuit, but with multiple plaintiffs deciding that for their purpose it is best to form a partnership to bring this lawsuit. It is very common to use this legal action in consumer associations, for example, against an insurance or banking entity.

Class action feasibility

It is common to find this type of class action lawsuit in the consumer world, but not only in front of financial institutions. It is also common and also advisable to initiate a class action lawsuit against an airline or railway company for all passengers if the transport has been canceled or delayed.

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These lawsuits are presented for damages caused by delays in transport, defective products, abusive clauses or labor disputes, among others.


The main characteristics of class action lawsuits are:

  • Despite the fact that there are multiple plaintiffs, there is only one trial that resolves all those conflicts that relate to the same problem. For example, a group of consumers consider that their right has been violated because the financial institution has stipulated abusive clauses. Instead of each consumer suing the bank alone, they decide to associate and make a single lawsuit against the bank.
  • Once this action is fixed, the object of the conflict is fixed and on which the judge will decide without being able to change it. Therefore, the class action lawsuit only makes sense when the problem is the same and there are no different cases between them (the problems). If the cases are very different, a single lawsuit will not be able to cover all the problems.
  • This lawsuit protects the subjective rights held by the people who file this action.
  • It works as a procedural impulse, when starting the judicial process.
  • This lawsuit can only have the objective of protecting rights recognized in the civil code, civil rights.
  • Class action lawsuits offer the advantage of having only one representation, attorney and lawyer, which reduces the costs of the process.

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