Securities Litigation Update: Eighth Circuit Endorses Striking Class-Action Allegations on the Pleadings……

On June 3, 2021, in Donelson v. Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc., a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit ordered class-action allegations in a putative securities fraud class action stricken on the pleadings under Rule 12(f) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and directed the matter to arbitration.

The decision is significant not only for its broad application of an arbitration clause to federal securities fraud claims, but as a rare appellate-level endorsement for striking class allegations under Rule 12(f)—which permits a court to strike from a pleading “an insufficient defense or any redundant, immaterial, impertinent, or scandalous matter”—prior to class discovery and a motion for class certification……

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