Rocio Concha, Which? Director of Policy and Advocacy, said:
“This is a hugely important win for consumers. Which? has campaigned long and hard for an effective collective redress scheme and the Supreme Court’s ruling will increase access to justice for consumers and set the standard for collective claims of this nature to proceed to trial.
“From today, the route to collective redress will be fairer, simpler and more attainable, and many cases that are currently on hold will be able to proceed to trial, ensuring victims of anti-competitive behaviour can get the justice they deserve.”
Notes to editors:
The Consumer Rights Act 2015 introduced the possibility of opt-out collective actions on behalf of those harmed by anti-competitive conduct. However, no claim has yet been allowed to proceed to a full trial – principally because all cases had been paused pending the Supreme Court’s judgment handed down today.
The Merricks v Mastercard claim, a collective action on behalf of 46 million consumers for £14 billion, will now be reheard in the Competition Appeal Tribunal, and the Tribunal will decide whether or not to certify the claim. The Tribunal had previously refused to certify the claim but the Court of Appeal subsequently overturned the Tribunal’s ruling. More info available here.
Which? was represented in the Supreme Court by collective action specialists Hausfeld & Co LLP and Tristan Jones of Blackstone Chambers.