Product Liability

  • October 17, 2017

    J&J Wins Mo. Appeal Of $72M Talc Cancer Verdict

    A Missouri appeals court on Tuesday tossed a jury’s finding that Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder caused a woman’s fatal ovarian cancer and award of $72 million in damages, ruling the Alabama woman’s case should never have been tried in St. Louis.

  • October 17, 2017

    Tampering Flap Puts J&J Trial Attys Under Ethics Microscope​

    A Texas federal judge's referral to the U.S. attorney's office of witness tampering allegations in a bellwether trial over Johnson & Johnson hip implants is rare and could carry serious consequences, both inside the case and beyond, for company lawyers accused of indirectly pressuring a doctor for the plaintiffs, legal ethics experts say.

  • October 17, 2017

    Takata Tort Claimants Say Carmakers Trying To Skirt Liability

    Automakers that are funding the Takata Corp. bankruptcy have been “stonewalling” on discovery to let case deadlines pass and ultimately sidestep liability connected to the defective air-bag inflators that sparked Takata's Chapter 11, the official tort claimants committee said late Monday.

  • October 17, 2017

    Shell’s $5M Spill Settlement A ‘Slap In The Face,’ Court Told

    Residents of an Illinois village allegedly contaminated by benzene spills from the Wood River Refinery have raised objections to a proposed $5 million settlement that would end a class action against refinery operator Shell Oil in Illinois federal court, calling the deal a “slap in the face.”

  • October 17, 2017

    Boss Pushed Pharmacist To Step Up Testing Before Outbreak

    A Boston jury on Tuesday heard several emails from the boss of a former pharmacist on trial for murder that urged him not "cut corners" on sterility and potency testing for the prescription drugs he manufactured shortly before his laboratory landed at the center of a deadly fungal meningitis outbreak.

  • October 17, 2017

    FDA Warning Wire: Multiple Issues At Dialysis Co.

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration found a plethora of problems at a California facility for making dialysis products, identified an illegal stimulant in fitness supplements, and scolded an online store for its health claims about its teas.

  • October 17, 2017

    Md. Asbestos Attys Clash Over Backlog At State Senate

    A Maryland Senate committee grappling with the backlog of thousands of asbestos lawsuits in state court in Baltimore sought the advice of attorneys in the case Tuesday, with plaintiffs’ attorneys arguing for consolidation and defendants’ attorneys arguing for case-by-case evaluations.

  • October 17, 2017

    'Cane Juice' False Ad Action Greenlighted, With Caveat

    A California federal judge on Monday cleared a potential class of Late July Snacks LLC customers to sue the company for calling sugar “evaporated cane juice” on its labels in an attempt to make it seem healthier, but blocked them from seeking an injunction or relief under California’s Unfair Competition Law.

  • October 17, 2017

    Bosch Says VW Dealers Can’t Show Harm In RICO Action

    Robert Bosch GmbH Inc. asked a California federal judge Tuesday to end a putative racketeering class action brought by dealerships alleging the auto parts maker helped Volkswagen AG skirt emissions regulations, saying there’s no evidence Bosch knew what its parts were used for or that dealerships were injured by the scheme.

  • October 17, 2017

    Flint Must Find Long-Term Water Solution, Judge Says

    A Michigan federal judge on Tuesday told the city of Flint, Michigan, it must soon pick a long-term drinking water source that satisfies the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2016 order directing the city and state to take measures to begin addressing the city’s water crisis.

  • October 17, 2017

    PennDOT Can Be Held Liable In Crash Suit, Pa. Justices Told

    A Pennsylvania couple urged the state's highest court Tuesday to bar the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation from skirting liability for injuries they suffered after their car hit a guardrail they say was negligently installed, arguing that exceptions to sovereign liability should apply to more than just dangerous roadway conditions.

  • October 17, 2017

    J&J Asbestos Trial A New Front In Talc Litigation

    A Johnson & Johnson user's attempt to prove the company's talcum powder is contaminated with asbestos will hinge on her ability to trace the talc she used from mine to mesothelioma, as a retrial starting this week will divert from the link between the powder and ovarian cancer to questions of whether J&J's talc came from quarries containing asbestos.

  • October 17, 2017

    Coke, Pepsi Diet Drinks Can Add Weight, False Ad Suits Say

    The Coca-Cola Co., Pepsi-Cola Co. and Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. mislead customers with “diet” drinks containing aspartame because the artificial sweetener can lead to weight gain, according to putative class actions filed in New York federal court Monday.

  • October 17, 2017

    Brazil Scores Partial Win Against Indonesian Chicken Rules

    A World Trade Organization dispute panel on Tuesday handed Brazil a partial victory in its challenge of various Indonesian food safety and licensing rules on chicken imports, teeing up appeals from both parties in the long-running case.

  • October 17, 2017

    Sen. Wants Repeal Of Opioid Law That Sunk Drug Czar Pick

    Sen. Claire McCaskill on Monday pushed to repeal a law that made it harder for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to crack down on misbehaving opioid distributors, saying the law championed by President Donald Trump’s since-withdrawn pick for drug czar was misleading and harmful.

  • October 17, 2017

    Ford Says Firms Lied To Get Drivers To Opt Out Of Deal

    Ford took aim Monday at two law firms representing about 12,500 Fiesta and Focus drivers, claiming they misled their clients in an effort to get them to opt out of a proposed settlement over allegedly defective transmissions.

  • October 17, 2017

    Rep. Who Cut DEA Powers Out As Trump's Drug Czar Pick

    President Donald Trump on Tuesday said his pick to lead the Office of National Drug Control Policy has backed out of the position, two days after media reports revealed the congressman had pushed legislation gutting the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's ability to target misbehaving opioid distributors.

  • October 16, 2017

    Expert Links 'Filth' In Costco-Bound Berries To Hep A Death

    A food safety expert told a California jury Monday that Costco should have never sold a frozen berry blend behind a hepatitis A outbreak that allegedly killed an 89-year-old woman because “filth” found in pomegranate seeds headed for the blend was a clear warning for disease.

  • October 16, 2017

    Neutrogena Buyers Seek Class Cert. In Sunscreen Label Row

    Neutrogena customers urged a California federal judge Monday to certify a class of consumers who allege they were misled by a “naturally sourced” label on Pure & Free sunscreen products, while the company countered that a survey supporting the customers' motion “violates every rule in the book.”

  • October 16, 2017

    Celanese's $2.4M Coverage Award Nixed By Mass. Court

    A Massachusetts appeals court on Monday vacated a decision ordering OneBeacon to repay Celanese Corp. for about $2.4 million the chemical company had paid to defend asbestos and other personal injury claims, finding that Celanese lost its right to reimbursement when it refused to let the insurer take control of its defense.

Expert Analysis

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Kozinski Reviews 'The Judge'

    Judge Alex Kozinski

    The new book "The Judge: 26 Machiavellian Lessons" is a lively tour of colorful incidents and personalities that have populated the U.S. Supreme Court for the past 23 decades. Do authors Ronald Collins and David Skover prove their thesis that hypocrisy is the key to judicial greatness? Some of their examples are hard to dispute, says Judge Alex Kozinski of the Ninth Circuit.

  • Sham Affidavits In Medical Product Liability: Part 1

    James Beck

    In the 20 years since the U.S. Supreme Court endorsed the sham affidavit doctrine — precluding creation of “genuine” factual issues by witnesses contradicting their own previous testimony — it has been important in many medical product liability cases, and practitioners should be aware of significant examples, says James Beck of Reed Smith LLP.

  • Evolution Of A Crisis: Opioid Claims Pick Up Speed

    Adam Fleischer

    On Sunday, the results of a six-month joint investigation by "60 Minutes" and The Washington Post concluded that "the drug industry, with the help of Congress, turned the opioid epidemic into a full blown crisis." In the coming months, insurers and pharmacy benefit managers are expected to undertake new and innovative efforts to control and disincentivize the use and prescription of opioids, says Adam Fleischer of BatesCarey LLP.

  • Financial Crisis Anniversary

    New Post-Recession Metrics For BigLaw Partner Success

    Peter Zeughauser

    After nearly a decade of recession-accelerated change in the legal industry, “merit-based” compensation has largely come to mean measuring attorney success using some combination of origination and working attorney hours metrics. However, there are signs that the real impact of the recession is still around the corner, and that building a book isn’t enough, says Peter Zeughauser of Zeughauser Group.

  • Understanding FDA Guidance On Connected Medical Devices

    Erin Bosman

    Last month, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued final guidance concerning the safety of interoperable medical devices. Complying with the guidance will help satisfy the FDA that a manufacturer has accounted for appropriate risk and safety factors, and may help defend against product liability claims, say attorneys with Morrison & Foerster LLP.

  • Opinion

    Time To Lift Student Loan Counseling Restrictions

    Christopher Chapman

    While it lends more than $100 million each year to our nation’s college students — including law students — the U.S. Department of Education surprisingly limits loan counseling to one-time entrance counseling for first-time student borrowers. Is this rational? asks Christopher Chapman, president of AccessLex Institute, a nonprofit focused on access to legal education.

  • Default Dates Of 1st Exposure Can Lead To Conflict

    Jim Dorion

    Troubling issues can arise when an umbrella or excess insurer refuses to accept claims of primary policy exhaustion because allocation of loss is based on a default date of first exposure. A Connecticut appellate court's decision in Vanderbilt v. Hartford earlier this year shows how practicality and fairness weigh into resolution of DOFE coverage issues, say Jim Dorion of Willies Towers Watson PLC and Stephen Hoke of Hoke LLC.

  • In California, Made-For-Outlet Products Are OK

    Jay Ramsey

    Many class actions have been filed against major retailers challenging the selling of products made only for an outlet or factory store, without disclosing them as such. But the California Court of Appeal recently upheld the lawfulness of this practice. The ruling may portend more courts taking a hard look at such claims, says Jay Ramsey of Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.

  • Retailers Must Prevent Sales Of Recalled Products

    Jonathan Judge

    Recently, Home Depot became the latest mass retailer to pay a civil penalty for selling products previously recalled by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Penalties like this signal that the CPSC has made enforcement of this issue a priority, and retailers must tightly manage their inventory to prevent such transactions from happening, says Jonathan Judge of Schiff Hardin LLP.

  • Why You Should Consider Hyperlinking Your Next Brief

    Christine Falcicchio

    The shift to electronic filing has somewhat eased the task of reviewing briefs and their supporting files. An e-brief takes e-filing to the next level, says Christine Falcicchio, a principal at Strut Legal Inc.