Kenneth L. Racowski, Counsel in Buchanan's Philadelphia office, was featured in a Law360 roundup of attorney opinions about the implications of the Supreme Court decision in Spokeo Inc. v. Thomas Robins et al.
"The Supreme Court's opinion in Spokeo did not answer the overarching question of whether Congress, via statute, could confer Article III standing on otherwise uninjured class members. Instead of a bright-line rule that would apply beyond the FCRA to other statutory-based consumer class actions and data breach class actions, the opinion only serves to further frame the question for future decisions. The court held that 'standing requires a concrete injury,' yet the technical violation of a statute 'can be sufficient in some circumstances.' So, while a win for Spokeo here, the opinion would seemingly hold a limited impact in determining what specific statutory provisions and alleged violations require further showings of concrete injury in fact and which are intangible harms that Congress has determined are sufficient for a private cause of action. Given deceased Justice Antonin Scaliaâ€™s comments during oral argument, his absence was likely a critical factor in shaping a final opinion that reads more like a compromise than a tangible attempt to resolve one of the key questions that will continue to reverberate throughout consumer class action litigation."
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