Product Liability

  • February 22, 2017

    Talc Studies Don't Merit User Warning, J&J Consultant Says

    A combative Johnson & Johnson representative who testified Wednesday in the trial over the potential link between talcum powder and a woman's ovarian cancer insisted that the entire scientific community has to unanimously agree something is a danger before a company needs to start warning its customers.

  • February 22, 2017

    Invokana Patients Lose Bid To Remand Kidney-Damage Suit

    A Pennsylvania federal judge on Wednesday ruled that 106 product liability actions against a Johnson & Johnson unit over kidney harm caused by diabetes medication Invokana will stay in federal court after they were removed from state court.

  • February 22, 2017

    Fla. Court Limits Widow's Damages Under Wrongful Death Law

    A Florida appeals court ruled Wednesday in a suit brought by the widow of a man who died of mesothelioma that a surviving spouse cannot claim loss of consortium damages under the state's wrongful death law if the two were not married at the time of the deceased spouse's injury.

  • February 22, 2017

    FTC, Maine AG Shut Down Deceptive Supplement Sellers

    A group of dietary supplement marketers will pay $556,000 to settle claims that they disguised radio infomercials as educational talk shows and used fake endorsers to push products promising to improve memory and reduce joint pain, the Federal Trade Commission announced Wednesday.

  • February 22, 2017

    Consumers Win Bid To Remand General Mills Labeling Claims

    Accusations by a group of consumer organizations that General Mills wrongly labels granola products containing chemical pesticides as healthy and natural are heading back to a D.C. trial court after a federal judge on Wednesday found jurisdiction lacking because the allegations did not directly implement federal statutes.

  • February 22, 2017

    Lawyers Seek Up To $41M From Halliburton Asbestos Deal

    Boies Schiller Flexner LLP and Kahn Swick & Foti LLC lawyers who reached a $100 million investor settlement with Halliburton over its asbestos liability disclosures told a Texas federal court Tuesday they would seek up to $40.8 million after a decade's litigation and two trips to the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • February 22, 2017

    Jury Awards $2.8M In Forest Service Airplane Crash Suit

    A Pennsylvania federal jury awarded $2.75 million on Tuesday to a U.S. Forest Service employee's widow in a product liability trial over a fiery airplane crash.

  • February 22, 2017

    NHL Denied Class Cert. Expert's Bibliography In CTE Suit

    A Minnesota federal judge denied the NHL’s bid to obtain the annotated bibliography for a report prepared by an expert for a proposed class of former players alleging claims over head injuries in hockey, as the parties continue to fight over discovery materials.

  • February 22, 2017

    AIG, Biotech Co. Fight Toss Of $36M Ad Injury Coverage Suit

    AIG and agricultural product company Stoller Enterprises Inc. on Tuesday both objected to a Texas magistrate judge's recommendation to throw out nearly all of Stoller’s suit seeking coverage from AIG for an unfair competition suit settlement of an undisclosed amount after triple damages totaled $36 million.

  • February 22, 2017

    NFL Class Says Ex-Player Is Spreading Deal Misinformation

    The lead counsel for the class of former players in the NFL concussion settlement told a Pennsylvania federal court that a retired running back, Fred Willis, is spreading false information about the settlement agreement, telling class members that the doctors set up under the agreement are chosen by the NFL and directing them to a network of “player-friendly” doctors that he set up.

  • February 22, 2017

    AbbVie Wants Out Of Testosterone MDL Before Bellwethers

    AbbVie Inc. and Abbott Laboratories have asked an Illinois federal judge to let them out of a massive multidistrict litigation over the marketing and sale of testosterone gel products, arguing the consumers haven’t shown a connection between the drug and the alleged increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

  • February 22, 2017

    Pharmacist, Wife Took In $20M Before Meningitis Outbreak

    A Massachusetts man charged with murder for his alleged role in the deadly 2012 meningitis outbreak grossed about $10 million over the 14 years his pharmacy was in business, with more than another $9 million going to his wife, according to evidence presented at his trial Wednesday.

  • February 22, 2017

    Theranos' Arizona Lab Sanctioned For Quality Control Issues

    A now-closed Theranos Inc. laboratory in Arizona was hit with sanctions — including the yanking of its testing license — last month after a fall inspection turned up quality control problems, the second time one of the company’s labs has been penalized, according to a news report Wednesday.

  • February 22, 2017

    CPSC Agrees To Issue Toy Safety Regs After 2-Year Delay

    The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Natural Resources Defense Council have reached an agreement in principle for the federal agency to ban from children’s products five chemicals that may cause reproductive harm — more than two years after the CPSC was supposed to promulgate the rules, attorneys told a federal judge in New York Wednesday.

  • February 22, 2017

    Baxter, Hospira Call Saline Price-Fixing Claims Illogical

    Baxter International Inc. and Hospira Inc. have each asked an Illinois federal court to dismiss an Alabama health care provider’s proposed antitrust class action alleging they conspired to fix the price of intravenous saline solution by using recalls to stage a shortage, with the former calling the allegations “pure fantasy.”

  • February 22, 2017

    Pa. Judge Again Trims Essure Injury Claims Against Bayer

    A Pennsylvania federal judge on Tuesday trimmed the claims of five women suing Bayer in consolidated litigation over its controversial Essure sterilization device in his second pass on the question of U.S. Food and Drug Administration preemption.

  • February 21, 2017

    Sunken Cargo Ship Owners Settle 17 Claims In Dispute

    The owners of the S.S. El Faro, a cargo ship that sank near the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin in 2015, have settled 17 claims brought by a variety of companies and the families of some of the crew members who died, according to documents filed Tuesday in Florida federal court.

  • February 21, 2017

    In Show-Me State, Plaintiffs May Have To Show More

    A number of proposed bills in the Missouri state Legislature could make litigation more costly and time-consuming for plaintiffs bringing product liability suits following the successful campaign of Gov. Eric Greitens, who ran on a pro-business platform and is likely to sign such legislation into law.

  • February 21, 2017

    J&J Plaintiff Didn't Test For Cancer Risk Genes, Jury Hears

    The closely watched talc trial against Johnson & Johnson continued Tuesday with a grueling cross-examination of a Harvard epidemiologist who was asked why, if cancer survivor Nora Daniels was so interested in pinpointing the cause of her ovarian cancer, she has avoided a key genetic test.

  • February 21, 2017

    6th Circ. Upholds Abbott Labs' Depakote Birth Defect Win

    The Sixth Circuit on Tuesday turned down a request for a new trial by a mother alleging that her child's birth defects were caused by Abbott Laboratories Inc.'s anti-seizure drug Depakote, saying that her arguments about what the U.S. Food and Drug Administration should have done were too speculative.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    Calif. Court Gets Automatic Funding Disclosure Right

    Matthew D. Harrison

    Detractors of litigation funding have strained to characterize a recent decision from a California federal court as significant headway in their crusade against the litigation funding industry. However, in truth, this is a victory for both the industry and those in need of capital to bring meritorious claims against wrongdoers in an often prohibitively expensive legal system, say Matthew Harrison and Priya G. Pai of Bentham IMF.

  • Less FDA Review May Boost Medical Device Plaintiff Awards

    Benjamin Lajoie

    Consumers harmed by medical devices often find themselves wronged but without relief, thanks to federal preemption. But President Donald Trump’s regulatory rollback could backfire against device manufacturers — and confer an unexpected benefit on plaintiffs — by weakening the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's oversight process and thus fortifying plaintiffs' state claims against federal preemption, says Benjamin Lajoie of Bailey & Glasser LLP.

  • Jurors In Toxic Tort Litigation Take Genetics Seriously

    David Schwartz

    Can jurors grasp the role of genetics in personal injury claims alleged to arise from exposure to specific chemicals? A recent asbestos trial featured a discussion of the plaintiff's genetic mutations as a factor in her mesothelioma. Trial lawyers should be thinking about how juries understand cancer, genetics and disease causation, say David Schwartz of Innovative Science Solutions and Kirk Hartley of LSP Group LLC.

  • How A Guacamole Lawsuit Exposes FDA's 'Natural' Ambiguity

    Elizabeth Boggia

    While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has generally not objected to the use of the term "natural" to describe foods that do not contain added color, artificial flavors or synthetic substances, the agency has yet to offer a specific definition of the word. Not surprisingly, this uncertainty has led to litigation, most recently over guacamole, says Elizabeth Boggia of Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP.

  • In Retrospect

    Relearning The Lessons Of Korematsu's Case

    Randy Maniloff

    Fred Korematsu’s U.S. Supreme Court case challenging President Franklin Roosevelt’s executive order that led to the incarceration of approximately 120,000 people of Japanese ancestry may sound like ancient history. However, Feb. 19 marks the 75th anniversary of the order's signing, and that it’s celebrating its diamond anniversary now is breathtaking timing, says Randy Maniloff of White and Williams LLP.

  • CPSC Civil Penalties: A Statistical Analysis

    Jonathan Judge

    In 2015, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Elliot Kaye announced that he had directed CPSC staff to seek “double-digit” penalties from companies found to be in violation of the Consumer Product Safety Act. Kaye appears to have accomplished his stated goal — a statistical analysis of agency fines shows that companies are being punished more severely than before, says Jonathan Judge of Schiff Hardin LLP.

  • Individual Defense In The Shadow Of Corporate Guilty Pleas

    Jessica K. Nall

    Corporate guilty pleas can be expected to have serious implications for the individual executives and employees alleged to have been involved in the conduct under scrutiny. But whether their corporate employer pleads guilty or pursues an alternative resolution, there are other factors at play that can make a bigger difference to the eventual outcome for individuals, say Jessica Nall and Janice Reicher of Farella Braun & Martel LLP.

  • How A General Counsel Should Think About AI: Part 2

    Bruce J. Heiman

    General counsels face the challenging task of understanding how companies can navigate the rules surrounding uses of artificial intelligence. To get smart on AI, general counsels must ask the right questions about areas such as human resources, intellectual property, liability and insurance, say Bruce Heiman and Elana Reman of K&L Gates LLP.

  • My Strangest Day In Court: When My Expert Had A Meltdown

    Esther Holm

    As I was going through one of the plaintiff’s claims — post-traumatic stress disorder — with my expert witness, the good doctor could not even recall the elements of the disorder! Then, suddenly, he pointed his finger at a young juror, remembers Esther Holm of Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP.

  • How A General Counsel Should Think About AI: Part 1

    Bruce J. Heiman

    Though the Trump administration has yet to make an official statement regarding artificial intelligence, support for AI is consistent with its expressed desire to promote American business. As such, general counsel will inevitably have to navigate what big data and AI mean for compliance with current and future laws and regulations, say Bruce Heiman and Elana Reman of K&L Gates LLP.