San Diego Law Review

Library of Congress Authority File


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This Article argues that Town of Chester reframes the one-good-plaintiff rule, turning an inquiry focused on at least one plaintiff with standing for each asserted claim into one in which courts must assay standing for the entire field of damages seekers. In three parts, the Article reviews Article III standing juxtaposed with the advent of the one-good-plaintiff rule, discusses Town of Chester, and explores how Town of Chester affects the future of the one-good-plaintiff rule. Although Town of Chester did not address existing plaintiffs or how their extant damages theories can anchor other parties, the Court’s rationale is a salvo against the idea that a lawsuit can proceed based on one plaintiff’s standing. By focusing on the need to separate plaintiffs attendant to whether damages are sought collectively or individually, Town of Chester will force plaintiffs to craft and solidify damages theories early in litigation without the benefit of discovery. Town of Chester presages more narrowly tailored injunctions, nudging against the continued utility of nationwide preliminary injunctions. Town of Chester also could limit access to the courts for certain types of lawsuits, like politicized cases challenging executive policies. By demanding fulsome analysis on all plaintiffs, courts no doubt will face ineluctable administrative burdens each time they must satisfy themselves of not encroaching upon an advisory opinion for a party without standing. The upshot is a shift from who has standing to how certain relief is supported by standing. Town of Chester offers a minor adjustment with major implications, reconstructing the one-good-plaintiff rule into the one-good-remedy rule.

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