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Dismissal of Appeal from Order Withdrawing Approval of Settlement
In McClendon v. Albuquerque, No. 09-2095, defendants' appeal from the district court's order withdrawing approval of a settlement in a class action lawsuit concerning conditions inside Albuquerque's jails, the court dismissed the appeal where an order withdrawing approval of a class action settlement agreement does not qualify as a "final decision" subject to appeal under 28 U.S.C. section 1291.
As the court wrote: "This is the latest installment in a long running class action lawsuit about conditions inside Albuquerque's jails. In this iteration of the case, we must answer only a single question: Does an order withdrawing approval of a class action settlement agreement qualify as a "final decision" subject to appeal under 28 U.S.C. § 1291? The answer is no. Like an order granting a new trial under Fed.R.Civ.P. 59, or an order granting relief from a judgment under Fed.R.Civ.P. 60(b), an order unraveling a class action settlement agreement is anything but a "final decision.""