The Netherlands is one of the first countries in Europe to put in place an opt-out collective redress system. The Dutch collective settlement procedure (known as “WCAM”) empowers the Amsterdam Court of Appeal to approve a settlement negotiated between a company and an association or private “claims foundation” representing a class of claimants, and declare it binding for the entire class.

In addition to WCAM, the Dutch parliament adopted a new class action law, which became effective on January 1, 2020.  The Dutch Act on the Resolution of Mass Claims in Collective Actions (known as “WAMCA”) introduced a U.S.-like opt-out class action system in all fields of law. It is available to non-Dutch residents on an opt-in basis.

Third Party Litigation Funding (TPLF) is also contributing to the rise of the Netherlands as a European venue of choice for group litigation. TPLF, which remains largely unregulated in the Netherlands, is readily available and is commonly used in mass claims. In April 2020, a group of litigation funders announced the creation of the European Association of Litigation Funders (EALF), based in Amsterdam.