Shook, Hardy & Bacon Partner Marc Shelley has co-authored a Portuguese-language editorial in Valor, the largest financial newspaper in Brazil, commenting on collective actions in Brazil and the European Union. Shelley's co-author, Fernando Dantas M. Neustein, is a partner at the Brazilian firm Mattos Muriel Kestener.
Brazil's legal system shares a common heritage with legal systems in the European Union, Shelley and Neustein explain, but when it comes to collective redress, Brazil and the EU appear headed in opposite directions. The European Commission has articulated a series of recommendations to balance access to justice for both consumers and industry by, among other things, preserving the loser-pay rule, requiring a determination of admissibility at the earliest opportunity, and prohibiting punitive damages. Brazil should heed the European recommendations rather than the path recommended in various proposals currently in the National Congress, Shelley and Neustein recommend.