Roper v. Consurve, Inc – Case Brief Summary (Federal Court)

In Roper v. Consurve, Inc., 578 F.2d 1106 (5th Cir. 1978), two credit card holders brought a class action suit alleging that the issuing bank was charging usurious rates. Id. at 1109.

After the trial court denied class action certification, the bank made an offer of judgment to the two class representatives and deposited the maximum possible recovery amount with the court registry. Id. The two class action representatives never accepted the bank's offer. Id.

The trial court entered judgment based on the bank's offer over the objection of the class representatives. Id. Although the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit noted that "prior to certification a class action cannot be dismissed merely because the representatives are satisfied," the issue before that Court was whether the two class representatives could appeal the trial court's denial of their motion for class action certification. Id. at 1110; see also Roper, 445 U.S. at 329.

The Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that the representatives could appeal, and the Supreme Court affirmed. Roper, 578 F.2d at 1110-11 ("The satisfaction of their claims could not preclude them from appealing the denial of certification . . . ."); Roper, 445 U.S. at 340.