Depuy Hip Lawsuit Updates | TheLawFirm.com

Depuy Pinnacle Hip Lawsuit News and Updates

The latest lawsuit and trial news for Depuy Pinnacle and ASR Hips in 2018.

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: In Aftermath Of DePuy Hip Fiasco, India Tightens Medical Device Oversight

April 19, 2019
Author: Daniel Gala

A regulatory body responsible for overseeing pharmaceuticals and medical devices in India will be changing the rules governing the regulation of medical devices in the country following the fiasco created by defective hip implants imported by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics, the Indian publication The Hindu reported April 19. The same body also has recommended changes related to the importation of pharmaceuticals into India.

Among the changes agreed to by the Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB) is an amendment to the Medical Devices Rules, 2017, that would require the tracking of the “names, qualifications and experiences of competent technical staff responsible for the manufacture and testing of medical devices,” according to The Hindu.

Another proposal would expand by more than 700 the staff responsible for monitoring the sale and use of medical devices in India. According to local observers, the timing is no coincidence.

“The move, which offers much needed protection to patients, and teeth to regulatory authorities in India, comes months after the Union Health Ministry found Johnson & Johnson Private Limited guilty of supplying faulty hip implants in India, and ordered the company to pay over Rs. 74 lakh [just over US$100,000] to a Mumbai-based patient as compensation,” The Hindu said.

India’s DTAB also has recommended changes that would amend Rule 26 of the Drugs and Cosmetic Rules, 1945, altering the requirements pertaining to the licenses needed to import pharmaceuticals into India. Some of the changes would be aimed at imposing the same requirements on imported drugs that already have applied to pharmaceuticals manufactured domestically.

Johnson & Johnson and Depuy faces tens of thousands of lawsuits around the world filed by patients alleging they have suffered injuries as a result of the companies’ defective hip implant devices, including thousands of cases in the United States alone.

Source:

Perappadan, B.S. (19 April 2019). After J&J case, govt. treads carefully. The Hindu

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: J&J, DePuy Fight India’s Central Government Over Hip Implant Compensation

April 13, 2019
Author: Daniel Gala

Even as a settlement has reportedly been reached in the United States that would resolve thousands of cases involving Pinnacle hip implants, Johnson & Johnson and its medical-device-maker subsidiary DePuy continue to face legal exposure around the globe over alleged defects to the companies’ hip-implant devices.

In the latest sign that their hip-implant woes remain far from over, the companies on April 8 formally contested to the Delhi High Court an order by the central government of India requiring that they pay a total of approximately 13 million Indian rupees (about US$190,000) to two plaintiffs who claim they were harmed by the defective DePuy ASR hip implants.

Instead of the amount sought by the government, Johnson & Johnson has said it will agree to pay to each claimant only 2.5 million Indian rupees, or approximately US$36,000, according to Livemint.com.

In its fling with the Delhi High Court, Johnson & Johnson challenged the legality of the central government’s payout demand, saying there was no basis in law for the sum arrived at.

As Johnson & Johnson and DePuy question the legality of the process, even the payout demanded by the central government has been met with criticism by some observers for what they perceive as its paltriness, particularly when compared to the hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars plaintiffs in the United States and elsewhere have received over similar claims.

The DePuy ASR hip implants at issue in the dispute in India also have been the subject of multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the United States, with federal cases having been centralized in the Northern District of Ohio.

Sources:

Sharma, P. and Thacker, T. (9 April 2019). J&J says will pay only 25 lakh to each hip implant patient. Livemint.com

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: After Reported Settlement, New Cases Continue To Be Transferred To DePuy Hip MDL

April 4, 2019
Author: Daniel Gala

Nearly two months after widespread media reports circulated in early February about a massive settlement agreement that would resolve roughly 10,000 claims over hip implants sold by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., new cases continue to be filed with the Northern District of Texas, where federal claims over the DePuy Pinnacle hip implant have been centralized since 2011, according to Court Records.

On April 2 alone, three new cases naming DePuy and Johnson & Johnson among the defendants were filed with the Northern District of Texas, with dozens of new cases having been filed in recent weeks. During that time span, lawsuits against DePuy and J&J also have been filed in the Northern District of Ohio, the Eastern District of Texas, and the District of New Jersey. All of the cases are classified as involving products liability claims.

In addition to the multidistrict litigation (MDL) taking place in the Northern District of Texas over DePuy’s Pinnacle hip implants, DePuy and J&J also face an MDL involving the companies’ ASR hip implants, located in the Northern District of Ohio.

While the terms of the reported DePuy Pinnacle hip implant settlement have not been revealed publicly, observers estimate that the defendants’ total liability could run over $1 billion. With each new valid claim that joins the MDL potentially becoming a party to the settlement agreement, the companies’ financial exposure continues to grow with each new filing.

Source:

See e.g. Shatz v. DePuy Orthopaedics Inc et al, filed April 2, 2019; Bogutzki v. DePuy Orthopaedics et al, filed April 2, 2019; and McGurk v. DePuy Orthopaedics Inc et al. Justia.com

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: DePuy Sues Competitor As It Remains Silent On Terms Of Pinnacle Hip Settlement

April 2, 2019
Author: Daniel Gala

As the public awaits word on the details of a reported settlement that would resolve long-running products liability litigation over Pinnacle hip implants made by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics, DePuy itself has decided to go on the offensive, filing a lawsuit of its own against competitor Orthofix Medical Inc. alleging “unlawful competitive activities,” according to Law360.

On Friday, March 22, DePuy filed a complaint in Texas federal court accusing Orthofix and a pair of former DePuy sales representatives of scheming to improperly coax DePuy customers over to Orthofix, allegedly by enticing DePuy sales personnel to betray their employer.

“This case arises out of Orthofix’s efforts to gain an unfair competitive advantage by inducing two sets of DePuy Synthes’ employees to breach their fiduciary duties and contractual obligations to DePuy Synthes,” the complaint read, per Law360.

Meanwhile, Johnson & Johnson and DePuy could potentially be on the hook for over $1 billion in liabilities related to products liability litigation involving Depuy's Pinnacle hip implants.

After a bellwether trial ended abruptly in late January 2019, numerous news outlets reported that a deal had been struck between plaintiffs and Johnson & Johnson that would end the multidistrict litigation (MDL), which has been ongoing in the Northern District of Texas since 2011. Since that time, however, information about the agreement has been kept under tight wraps. Observers anticipate that Johnson & Johnson might reveal some terms about the agreement in its SEC disclosures for the first quarter of 2019, which ended March 31.

Although details of the settlement, including its financial terms, have not been revealed publicly, Bloomberg reported in December 2018 that about one-third of the 10,000 Pinnacle MDL cases had settled for an average of $125,000 per plaintiff, or a total of over $400 million, based on five sources with knowledge of the agreement. Based on these figures, a settlement resolving all, or nearly all, claims could easily top $1 billion.

Sources:

Hutchinson, T. (25 March 2019). DePuy Alleges Rival Induced Workers To Break Contracts. Law360

Bellon, T. (4 February 2019). J&J, plaintiffs ‘close’ to deal on Pinnacle hip implant lawsuits: lawyer. Reuters

Feeley, J. (12 December 2018). J&J Is Willing to Pay $400 Million-Plus in Hip-Device Cases. Bloomberg

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: retrial begins for texas plantiffs in depuy hip mdl

February 4, 2019
Author: Daniel Gala

On Friday, January 25, 2019, lawyers delivered opening statements in the re-trial of an earlier case between five Texas plaintiffs and Johnson & Johnson (J&J) over allegedly defective metal-on-metal hip implants made by a unit of the company. Like the original trial, which initially resulted in a jury awarding the plaintiffs $502 million before being vacated by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, the re-trial is expected to last more than a month.

The case is part of enormous multidistrict litigation (MDL) over the alleged defects of the Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implant, which is designed and manufactured by J&J subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. According to Law360, in his opening remarks, Mark Lanier, an attorney for the plaintiffs, claimed that his clients have suffered a range of debilitating injuries as a result of their receiving DePuy hip implants, including tissue damage, loss of muscle, and chronic pain.

Lanier further accused DePuy of incentivizing surgeons by paying royalties based on the number of DePuy hip implants sold, allowing some doctors to earn tens of millions of dollars in the process.

Meanwhile, attorneys for Johnson & Johnson and DePuy sought to downplay the plaintiffs’ legal case, saying that patients are provided with information about the potential need for revision surgery, in which hip implants are surgically replaced in whole or in part.

“There’s no guarantees against pain,” Leon Carter, attorney for J&J, told the court, per Law360.“Each one of these people were told that they might have to have some or all of their hip replaced.”

The original trial took place in 2016 and was the second of four bellwether trials in the DePuy hip MDL. Jurors initially awarded the five plaintiffs over half a billion dollars in damages, a verdict that was later reduced to about $150 million prior to being vacated completely and remanded to the district court for retrial.

As of December 2018, the DePuy hip MDL had nearly 10,000 cases pending, according to Law360.

Source:
Hutchinson, T. (2019, January 25). J&J Knew Hip Implants A ‘Disaster,’ Jury Hears in Retrial. Law360

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Depuy Pinnacle Hip Lawsuits undergoing a re-trial

January 29, 2019

The long outstanding Depuy Pinnacle hip cases are undergoing a re-trial in a Texas Court room. Johnson & Johnson has only won of the bellwether trials, but they have refused to appropriately settle these cases. As we previously wrote, the offer to settle for approximately $125,000 each is woefully inadequate in our view and we will not recommend this hip settlement to our clients.

In the latest re-trial, the jury has heard that Johnson & Johnson knew the implants were “a disaster” but executed a plan to “get every last sale.”



During opening statements in the retrial, the jury was told that DePuy’s Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implant caused the five plaintiffs to suffer a range of injuries including severe tissue damage that caused permanent muscle loss, intense pain and loss of hip movement.

Despite all the evidence that has come out in the trials so far, Johnson & Johnson continues to defend these hips and claims to have acted responsibly in the development and marketing of the Pinnacle product.


 This claim will likely be undercut by the Plaintiffs’ first witness, Dr. Nargol. Dr. Nargol is an orthopedic surgeon with advanced specialty training who practices in England. He was formerly engaged by DePuy to train other orthopedics to conduct Pinnacle-related surgeries. He later blew the whistle on ASR and then Pinnacle. We fully expect his testimony to be well received by the jury.

Why is this re-trial so important? Another large win for the Plaintiffs will embolden us in our rejection of the in adequate and insulting settlement offer made by Johnson & Johnson regarding these hips. The first trial resulted in a $502 million verdict. It was reversed when the Court of Appeals found that U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade allowed jurors to hear “recurring and highly prejudicial” testimony about J&J and that lead plaintiffs’ counsel Mark Lanier had wrongly represented to jurors that two orthopedic surgeons who testified in the trial were unpaid.

Note the verdict was not reversed because the product is safe. It was reversed on ‘technical grounds’. We fully expect the Plaintiffs to win this trial and we will continue to seek real justice for our clients with a Pinnacle hip. Johnson & Johnson may finally be on the run with regards to this product, as they just agreed to pay $120 million to end a wide-ranging investigation into whether it misled customers about the longevity and efficacy of its hip replacement devices.

Source:
Law360

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Johnson & Johnson Reports More Than 12,000 Active Lawsuits Over DePuy Hips

November 2, 2018

Cumulatively, Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary businesses face more than 12,000 active lawsuits in the United States alone over hip-implant devices manufactured by DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., the conglomerate disclosed in a quarterly report filed October 31 with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Product liability lawsuits over DePuy hip implants, including class-action suits, have been filed in numerous other countries, as well.

Patients have sued Johnson & Johnson and DePuy over injuries allegedly caused by a variety of DePuy hip-implant products, including the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System, ASR Hip Resurfacing System, and Pinnacle Acetabular Cup System. J&J reports about 2,000 DePuy ASR cases and 10,400 DePuy Pinnacle cases ongoing in the United States as of September 30.

Despite being subject to a worldwide voluntary recall in 2010, DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System and ASR Hip Resurfacing System continue to be the subject of new lawsuits, according to Johnson & Johnson’s report for the third quarter of 2018. In the US, federal DePuy ASR cases have been consolidated in multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the Northern District of Ohio, where the defendant companies have resolved many claims through a massive settlement program. Outside the US, Johnson & Johnson companies face DePuy ASR lawsuits in the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Ireland, Germany, and Italy.

With regards to DePuy Pinnacle lawsuits, the “number of pending product liability lawsuits continues to increase,” with federal cases in the United States having been centralized in an MDL in the Northern District of Texas. According to J&J, “Several adverse verdicts have been rendered against DePuy, which are currently being appealed.”

In a show of confidence in the strength of its Pinnacle defense, Johnson & Johnson says it “has established an accrual for defense costs only in connection with production liability litigation associated with the PINNACLE Acetabular Cup System,” (emphasis added) meaning the company has set aside money to pay its lawyers, but not plaintiffs.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective DePuy hip implant, contact the experienced lawyers at TheLawFirm.com now for a free consultation with a licensed attorney!

Sources:
United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
Product Liability. Legal Proceedings. Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure. United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Form 10-Q. Johnson & Johnson. September 30, 2018. Filed October 31, 2018.

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Judge Approves Common Benefit Hold in Depuy Pinnacle MDL

October 15, 2018

The judge overseeing multidistrict litigation (MDL) involving allegations over DePuy’s Pinnacle Ultamet hip implant has approved the plaintiffs’ request for a “common benefit hold”, entering on August 29 a Preliminary Holdback Order that will prevent distribution of any funds until the court has had the opportunity to conduct a so-called common benefit assessment, documents obtained through the court’s website show.

On the same date, the court also entered its Final Judgment in the MDL’s fourth bellwether trial, based on a jury verdict returned November 16, 2017. The jury in that case found for the plaintiffs, ordering DePuy Orthopaedics and its parent company Johnson & Johnson to pay a combined $28 million in punitive damages alone.

In the Preliminary Holdback Order, US District Court Judge Ed Kinkeade, who has been overseeing the Pinnacle hip implant MDL in the Northern District of Texas, writes that the Order will “enable equitable sharing of attorneys’ fees and expenses among Plaintiffs and the counsel who act for the common benefit of all Plaintiffs in the cases that are or were pending in this MDL proceeding.”

The Preliminary Holdback Order was the first judicial order posted to the DePuy Pinnacle MDL’s website since April, when the court issued a series of case management orders. The plaintiffs’ request for such an order, filed as an Omnibus Motion, might be an indication that plaintiffs and the defendant companies are nearing agreement in their settlement talks and are making final arrangements for how such a deal would be executed.

To date, four bellwether trials have been conducted within the MDL, with the last commencing in September 2017. Three of the four trials have resulted in jury verdicts for the plaintiffs.

In the first bellwether , which took place over September and October 2014, a jury found defendants DePuy and Johnson & Johnson not liable for the injuries of plaintiff Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli. However, the jury in the second bellwether sided with the plaintiffs against the defendant companies, awarding over $60 million in exemplary damages in a verdict returned March 17, 2016. (This amount was later reduced, as “Texas law limits the amount a plaintiff may recover in exemplary damages.”)

Following the third Pinnacle Ultamet bellwether trial, a jury verdict returned December 2016 also found J&J and DePuy liable for injuries suffered by six different plaintiffs, again ordering the companies to pay millions of dollars in damages. Finally, as mentioned above, the fourth bellwether also resulted in a verdict for the plaintiffs.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective medical device, contact the experienced team of attorneys at TheLawFirm.com right away for a free legal consultation with a licensed attorney. The law places strict deadlines on your ability to file a claim, so don’t delay!

Sources:
United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas IN RE: Depuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Johnson and Johnson SEC Filings Disclose Legal Liability Over Depuy Hips, Other Products

Wednesday, August 28, 2018

With Johnson & Johnson disclosing a wide range of product-liability litigation in its most recent financial filings, the company has cited thousands of lawsuits it faces over DePuy hip implants as among “the most significant of these cases,” a review conducted by TheLawFirm.com has revealed.

In its Form 10-Q filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on August 2, 2018, Johnson & Johnson declared that, “[a]s of July 1, 2018, in the United States there were approximately 2,000 plaintiffs with direct claims in pending lawsuits regarding injuries allegedly due to the DePuy ASR™ XL Acetabular System and DePuy ASR™ Hip Resurfacing System.”

In August 2010, DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc. issued a voluntary recall of the ASR CL Acetabular System and the ASR Hip Resurfacing System. DePuy and Johnson & Johnson now face thousands of product-liability claims across the United States and around the world over injuries caused by the defective medical devices.

In the US, federal claims involving the DePuy ASR products have been consolidated as multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the Northern District of Ohio, according to the filing. Johnson & Johnson further disclosed that it and DePuy also face ASR-related claims in countries such as the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Ireland, Germany, and Italy.

According to Johnson & Johnson’s filings, since 2013, it and DePuy have been engaging in a settlement program that to date has resolved over 10,000 claims relating to the DePuy ASR CL Acetabular System and ASR Hip Resurfacing System. Johnson & Johnson expects these settlement figures to continue to grow as it works to resolve outstanding claims.

However, despite the large number of settlements, Johnson & Johnson has reported that DePuy ASR-related “lawsuits in the United States remain, and the settlement program does not address litigation outside of the United States.”

Internationally, the SEC filings state that “[i]n Australia, a class action settlement was reached that resolved the claims of the majority of ASR Hip patients in that country. In Canada, the Company has reached agreements to settle two pending class actions which have been approved by the Québec Superior Court and the Supreme Court of British Columbia.”

If you or a loved one ever suffers harm as a result of a defective medical device, contact the experienced team of attorneys at TheLawFirm.com right away for a free legal consultation with an actual attorney!

Sources:
US District Court for the Northern District of Texas IN RE: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation
United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
Form 10-Q – “Johnson & Johnson and Subsidiaries” – Filed August 2, 2018
Notes to Financial Statements – Legal Proceedings

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Discovery Process Nears Fall Deadlines in Depuy Hip Implant MDL

Wednesday, August 24, 2018

While there has been a relative lack of publicly visible court activity following the conclusion of the fourth of four bellwether trials in late 2017, plaintiffs and defendants in multidistrict litigation (MDL) over DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc.’s Pinnacle Ultamet hip implants continue to make preparations behind the scenes as they race to meet fast-approaching fall 2018 discovery deadlines.

In a series of case management orders issued in early April 2018, US District Court Judge Ed Kinkeade established filing deadlines for Plaintiff Profile Forms (PPFs) and Defendant Fact Sheets (DFSs). With the last of the PPF deadlines being slated for August 2018 and the earliest of the DPFs being due the following October, it is likely that there soon will be an increased amount of court activity as the MDL enters its next phase.

The product-liability litigation, which was consolidated as an MDL in the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas in 2011, involves allegations that Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics are liable for harms caused by DePuy Pinnacle's hip implant. As of mid-August 2018, the massive MDL continued to include over 9,000 separate lawsuits, according to Law360.

In the MDL’s first bellwether trial, which involved a single plaintiff from Montana, a jury sided with Johnson & Johnson and DePuy, holding them not liable for the plaintiff’s injuries. However, the victory was short-lived for the defendant medical-device makers, who were ordered by juries in subsequent bellwethers to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.

For example, the jury verdict for the fourth bellwether trial, delivered in November 2017, found Johnson & Johnson and DePuy liable for design defect (strict liability), negligent design, inadequate warning (strict liability), manufacturing defect (strict liability), negligent manufacture, negligent misrepresentation, intentional misrepresentation (fraud) to the plaintiffs’ implanting surgeons, fraudulent concealment from plaintiffs, fraudulent concealment from plaintiffs’ implanting surgeons, deceptive business practices toward plaintiffs, and deceptive business practices toward plaintiffs’ implanting surgeons.

The jury also found Johnson & Johnson liable for negligent undertaking as to the duties it undertook to perform for DePuy Orthopaedics, as well as aiding and abetting DePuy in its illicit acts. The jury found Johnson & Johnson and DePuy not liable for intentional misrepresentation (fraud) to plaintiffs.

If you or a loved one has suffered harm as a result of a DePuy Pinnacle hip implant or other defective medical device, contact the experienced team of attorneys at TheLawFirm.com today for a free legal consultation with an actual attorney!

Sources:
US District Court for the Northern District of Texas IN RE: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation
Court’s Charge to the Jury and Jury Verdict, Fourth Bellwether
Case Management Order No. 10 Pinnacle Plaintiff Profile Form
Agreed Case Management Order No. 11 Defendant Facts Sheet
Law360

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Depuy Hip Implant Plaintiffs Say They Are Owed $247 Million

Wednesday, August 13, 2018

Following a November 2017 verdict in which a Texas jury found Johnson & Johnson and its affiliate DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. liable for $247 million in damages over their defective line of DePuy Pinnacle Ultamet metal-on-metal hip implants, the plaintiffs in the case have reduced their requested take by approximately $1.2 million to account for medical expenses reimbursed by private insurance.

The trial was the fourth bellwether trial in complex multidistrict litigation (MDL) consolidated in US District Court for the Northern District of Texas. It involved ten New York State plaintiffs who sued the defendant companies in Texas federal court, a venue that has been contested by J&J and DePuy.

Under New York law, damages for medical expenses must be reduced by the amount compensated by private insurance, resulting in the adjusted sums submitted by the plaintiffs. The submittal of revised damages was reported by Law360 on August 9, 2018.

In total, the MDL includes some 9,000 cases in which plaintiffs have sued the device makers over harms allegedly caused by faulty hip implants.

“It is a pity that Johnson & Johnson refuse to address this problem and instead get hit over and over by 9-figure verdicts knowing the aging pool of plaintiffs will keep most from living to see resolution of their claims," commented plaintiffs attorney W. Mark Lanier, according to Law360. "This is the third nine-ten figure verdict in a row against Johnson & Johnson, including findings of punitive damages. J&J's product is horrible, J&J's conduct is indefensible, hence J&J bases its fight on hopeful legal technicalities of jurisdiction and venue."

Among other allegations, plaintiffs have claimed that the device makers used substandard materials in their hip implants and failed to adequately test the products on humans prior to marketing and selling them. Plaintiffs say they suffered permanent tissue and muscle damage, loss of mobility, and severe pain as a result.

With verdicts having been rendered in four bellwether trials, juries have sided for plaintiffs and against the device makers in three, awarding over a billion dollars in total damages that were later reduced to the hundreds of millions.

Sources:
Law360

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Texas DePuy Hip MDL Proceeds with Fact Sheet Exchange

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

As of summer 2018, thousands of cases involving plaintiffs accusing DePuy Orthopaedics of designing and manufacturing defective hip implants continue to make their way through federal district court in Texas as part of multidistrict litigation (MDL). With four bellwether trials now having been completed, plaintiffs in the remaining cases are in the process of providing Plaintiff Fact Sheets, per a court order issued in April 2018.

The cases involve allegations that DePuy pushed its line dangerous Pinnacle Ultamet metal-on-metal hip implants on unwitting patients, resulting in serious injury. DePuy is a subsidiary of consumer goods and pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson.

As Mark Lanier, attorney for many of the plaintiffs, described to Law360 in 2017, “This is a case that’s about…people who trusted a doctor, and they trusted the product that doctor gave them, and they got a terrible result.”

In four completed bellwether trials to come out of the MDL, the first resulted in a defense verdict; the second ended with a $502 million jury verdict that later was reduced to $150 million; the third—which involved six plaintiffs—resulted in a verdict of over $1 billion, later lowered to $543 million; and the fourth ended in a $247 million verdict for the plaintiffs.

According to Law360, as of fall 2017, over 9000 cases remain in the Texas MDL, which likely will continue to wind its way through the federal court system for years to come.

Sources:
United States District Court – Northern District of Texas IN RE: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation MDL 3:11-md-02244
Law 360 - United Fourth Bellwether Verdict
Law360 - First, Second, and Third Bellwether Verdicts

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Commentators Call for Clarification of Expert Compensation Rules after DePuy Ruling

June 13, 2018

Following a Fifth Circuit ruling that reversed a plaintiff’s victory against DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. on the basis of the plaintiff’s failure to disclosure that expert witnesses were being compensated for their testimony, legal commentators are calling for clarification of the legal standards involving such disclosures.

As Ekaterina Long wrote for Law360 on June 12, 2018, “Given that we live in a free market society in which people could reasonably expect to be compensated for providing their professional services, it is certainly a reasonable assumption that a nonretained expert witness would be compensated in some fashion for providing testimony. However, this is an assumption that apparently does not go without saying, and an express provision regarding the disclosure of a nonretained expert's compensation should be in place.”

The Fifth Circuit decision involved a case in which the plaintiff claimed to have suffered injuries as a result of a defective hip implant designed by Depuy. During the trial, attorneys for the defense moved for release of judgment on the basis that an attorney for the plaintiff had implied that two of its expert witnesses were uncompensated, when this may not have been the case.

Attorneys for plaintiff made a $10,000 donation to the high school alma mater of one of the expert witnesses just weeks before trial. The other expert witness in question stated in a deposition that he expected to be compensated. Both witnesses did in fact receive payments from the plaintiffs’ attorneys following the jury verdict in the plaintiff’s favor.

The trial court denied the defense’s motion, pointing out that there was no evidence of an agreement for compensation at the time of trial. However, the Fifth Circuit disagreed, finding that the trial court had erred in its application of the relevant legal rule.

Would the jury have decided differently if it had known that expert witnesses for the plaintiff were being compensated for their testimony? Of course, such a hypothetical can never be answered. But, to avoid such situations in the future, legal commentators like Long are calling for a clarification of the disclosure standard.

As Long writes, “Incorporating a simple requirement to more completely disclose expert witness compensation…would significantly lessen the need to focus on attorney conduct, and place that focus squarely on the merits of each case.”

Sources:
Law360

DePuy Hip Lawsuit News Update: Dozens of Cases Still Pending In Consolidated NJ Depuy Hip Lawsuits

May 31, 2018

Despite Depuy Orthopaedics, a unit of consumer-goods and pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson, having voluntarily recalled its ASRT hip implants in August 2010, according to an update released by the New Jersey Courts website on May 29, 2018, dozens of consolidated lawsuits remain ongoing in centralized proceedings being overseen by Judge Rachelle L. Harz of Bergen County.

The 2010 recall was prompted by data indicating that five years after surgery, 13% of patients who had received DePuy ASRT hip implants required revision surgery involving an additional hip replacement. The Bergen County lawsuits have been filed on behalf of patients claiming harms caused as a result of these allegedly defective devices.

In July 2016, the New Jersey Supreme Court approved consolidation of the lawsuits as multicounty litigation. According to the May 29 case list, 53 suits presently still are ongoing, with filing dates ranging from as far back as April 2011 to as recently as January 2018.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective medical device, the experienced team of attorneys at TheLawFirm.com are standing by, ready to provide you with a free legal consultation from an actual attorney. The law places strict time limits on your ability to file a claim, so contact us today!

Sources:
New Jersey Courts Website DePuy ASR Hip Implant Litigation – Main Page
DePuy Hip Implant Case List

Legal Disclaimer: The information in this article is not intended to be used as medical information or diagnosis. The sources of the information presented in the article have been researched and are linked within the article. Please seek out medical advice from a licensed medical professional if you are experiencing a problem with any of the drugs or devices mentioned in this article. 

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