When a putative class action is transferred and consolidated with others for coordinated pretrial proceedings in multidistrict litigation (“MDL”) under 28 U.S.C. § 1407, it ordinarily remains an independent action for purposes of finality under 28 U.S.C. § 1291. Thus, when a district court handling an MDL dismisses without leave to amend a single-count antitrust class action pending therein, the dismissal order brings that action to a close, and it is final and appealable to the applicable circuit court of appeals under 28 U.S.C. § 1291 despite the fact that other consolidated actions remain pending in that MDL.
A unanimous United States Supreme Court, with Justice Ginsburg authoring the opinion, issued this holding in Gelboim v. Bank of America Corp., et al., No. 13-1174, – U.S. – (Jan. 21, 2015), which involved an MDL comprised of over 60 actions, spanning over a dozen states, and alleging manipulation by banks of the London InterBank Offered Rate (LIBOR). In the process, the Supreme Court reversed the Second Circuit and remanded for consideration as a final appeal the order dismissing the single-count antitrust class action.