Group Litigation Reaches Mexico: Revisiting Mexico's System of Collective Actions as a Vehicle to Ensure Efficient Implementation of Environmental Justice

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David P. Vincent


This Note analyzes the decision of the Mexican legislature to allow for a system of group litigation to redress a particular set of environmentally based legal problems. The laws of Mexico, as they currently read, do not comport with the legislative intent of the authors of the legislation to allow for group litigation. This is primarily an effect of the economic incentives imposed by the new system of group litigation on institutional interests and corporate actors in Mexico. The argument advanced by this Note is that either judicial or legislative clarifications must be made to this legislation to effectuate the intent of the acts of the Mexican Congress. This may be achieved through Jurisprudencias, Ejecutorias, expansive judicial interpretation in the coming years, or through additional legislative amendments; all of which could provide additional parameters to ensure the unassailable environmental and constitutional rights of Mexican citizens. However, this Note advances the idea that the most effectual vehicle for implementing such change is through the introduction of additional pecuniary damages with regard to group litigation. In the coming years, the system of group litigation in Mexico is certain to come under heavy criticism and scrutiny from citizens, legal scholars and politicians alike. The arguments proposed herein must be addressed by the Mexican Congress to ensure that the environmental rights of citizens, guaranteed by the Mexican Constitution, are not subordinated to institutional economic interests.

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