SCOTUS Denies Cert in Generic Preemption Case

Federal preemption of claims against generic drug manufacturers has prevented (or severely limited) the ability of users of generic drugs from bringing products liability claims premised upon the failure to warn.  Certain state courts have indicated that some state tort law claims may not necessarily be barred by federal preemption, but these “baby steps” potentially


Standard of Liability Under the WPLA for Manufacturers

The WPLA defines five categories of potential liability for product manufacturers: construction defects, breach of warranty, design defects, failure to warn, and post-sale duty to warn. Construction Defects The WPLA uses the term “strict liability” to describe a manufacturer’s responsibility for products that materially deviate from the manufacturers design specifications or performance standards or materially


Hot Cells – A 2015 Version of Hot Coffee?

It sounds familiar. A product one wouldn’t think of as a hazard suddenly becomes one. In 1992, it was Stella Liebeck and a scalding cup of McDonald’s coffee, a case that still gets tempers boiling, regardless of the fact that the original jury award was reduced. This year, we have Erik Johnson, whose iPhone exploded


Xarelto MDL has first status conference

The first conference in the Xarelto MDL (In Re: Xarelto (Rivoroxaban) Products Liability Litigation, MDL 2592,  proceeding in the Eastern District of Louisiana, before the Hon. Eldon E. Fallon, took place on January 29, 2015.  Judge Fallon, an experienced MDL presiding judge, has already set up a website for the MDL (http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/xarelto), with posts of


Pelvic Mesh MDL Litigation Updates

A flurry of orders have issued from the chambers of the Hon. Joseph R. Goodwin, the United States District Judge presiding over  the pelvic mesh MDLs in the Southern District of West Virginia, Charleston Division.  The Court vacated and reset a bellwether trial set for December 4, 2014 to March 2, 2015, in Bellew v.


IVC Filters: FDA Was Wary Four Years Back

Have you ever seen one of those metal head massagers, the ones with thin, spider-like metal legs that bend and flex to tickle your scalp?  That’s pretty much exactly how inferior vena cava filters look, except IVC filters are much smaller – they fit inside a vein, and are used to catch blood clots before



Tylenol MDL: Acetaminophen Linked to Serious Side Effects, Death

Last year, a Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) was created to consolidate lawsuits against McNeil PPC, Inc., the company that owns Johnson and Johnson, alleging that “over-the-counter (“OTC”) acetaminophen containing products that are [marketed] and sold under its TYLENOL® brand-name caused liver damage, including liver failure, even when taken as directed.” Currently, there are about 125 Tylenol


Defective Nissan Brakes: Class-Action Suit Settled

Today, Reuters reported that Nissan North America “agreed to reimburse customers between $20 and $800 each to resolve a lawsuit alleging that defects in certain vehicles caused brakes to fail suddenly, according to court papers.”  Fortunately, no deaths have as yet been attributed to these defective Nissan brakes. According to the Associated Press, “A judge


Mercedes Plant Union Possible with National Labor Relations Board Ruling

This week, the National Labor Relations Board “upheld a ruling that Mercedes violated federal labor laws by stopping United Auto Workers union supporters from handing out literature inside its Alabama plant”, as reported by the Associated Press.  While laborers at this Mercedes plant – the largest in the United States – are not organized, the