Putting Our Knowledge And Experience To Work
Mass Tort Claims Attorneys in Ohio and Kentucky
When a dangerous product affects hundreds of people spread out over many states, it may take form as a mass tort case, which is then resolved through a process known as multidistrict litigation (MDL). Mass tort claims and multidistrict litigation can be extremely complex cases and should only be handled by a competent law firm with plenty of experience and resources.
Fortunately, at The Lawrence Firm, PSC, we have years of experience handling Kentucky and Ohio product liability claims and mass tort cases and are able to skillfully assist clients. Our litigators have successfully represented clients in a broad range of mass tort claims, and would be happy to take on your case. If you or a loved one has been injured due to negligence of any kind, our mass tort attorneys are here to protect your rights. Contact us today online or by phone at 800-698-4054 to arrange a consultation with a knowledgeable Kentucky or Ohio litigation attorney.
What is Mass Tort?
The word “tort” is simply a general legal term for any wrongful conduct that results in injury. Some torts are unintentional, while others are deliberate. In any situation, the affected victims have the right to initiate a civil action to seek redress for their losses.
With that in mind, a mass tort is a single unlawful act that harms a large number of individuals. These persons who have been wounded can join forces in a single mass tort case to seek justice for their injuries from a defendant. Plaintiffs’ success against large defendants such as product and medicine manufacturers can be greatly aided by mass tort proceedings.
What is the Difference Between Class Action Lawsuits and Mass Tort Cases?
Mass torts and class actions are similar in nature, but they are not one and the same. They are similar in that several people were harmed, either physically, financially, or both, and are taking legal action against the same liable party. They both also consolidate multiple individual lawsuits into a single lawsuit.
What makes them different is essentially the way in which the case is presented in regards to the plaintiffs. In a mass tort lawsuit, each plaintiff is considered as an individual, and each must establish the facts of his or her claim as well as demonstrate how he or she was harmed as a result of the defendant’s negligence.
Class action lawsuits, on the other hand, do not treat the plaintiffs on an individual basis but rather as a whole. The “class” is considered as if it were a single plaintiff with a single lawyer, whether it is one attorney or an entire legal team. This means that the entire class of plaintiffs must make one solid case rather than multiple individual ones.
Examples of Mass Tort Cases
There are plenty of mass tort and class action lawsuits out there, including those involving defective medical devices, dangerous drugs, malfunctioning machines and equipment, and more. Here are some examples of mass tort cases we’ve handled at The Lawrence Firm:
- Abilify: An antipsychotic drug that is used to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression. The use of Abilify affects the levels of dopamine and serotonin in the brain. However, Abilify has been associated with individuals developing compulsive behaviors such as spending, gambling, drinking, and overeating.
- Essure: This is a permanent birth control procedure. It is a hysteroscopic sterilization procedure in which small coils are inserted into the fallopian tubes. Many women have suffered chronic pelvic pain, bleeding, have had internal organs perforated, and have developed severe migraines and allergic reactions to the Essure device or its components. There have also been deaths and ectopic pregnancies associated with the implantation of Essure. The FDA has recently expanded the “black box warnings” associated with its use.
- Proton Pump Inhibitor Drugs: “PPI” drugs sold over-the-counter known as Nexium, Prilosec, and Prevacid have been shown to cause injuries when used long-term. PPI drugs are prescribed for heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and erosive esophagitis. When taken over long periods of time, PPI drugs are shown to have caused individuals to develop chronic kidney disease (CKD), end-stage renal failure (ESRD), dementia, heart attacks, and bone fractures.
- Testosterone Therapy: If someone suffers from low testosterone levels, a doctor may prescribe testosterone. However, this type of pharmaceutical therapy has recently been shown to have the potential for causing devastating side effects, including heart attacks, strokes, and pulmonary embolism.
- Yaz: This prescription medication is used as a contraceptive to prevent pregnancy in women as well as to treat premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) and symptoms of acne. However, the side effects of Yaz (drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol) can be very dangerous. After taking this medication, women have experienced complications such as pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis, and blood clots that can eventually lead to stroke and/or heart attack.
- Cardiac Catheters: These devices are used during cardiac ablations as well as other cardiac procedures. Unfortunately, many individuals have been injured and suffered perforations, bleeding, and swelling in the pericardial space around the heart after the use of a cardiac catheter. When not properly measured, the electricity in these devices can cause holes or perforations in cardiac vessels and surrounding organs.
- da Vinci Robotic Surgical System: To assist surgeons and to provide what has been reported as a “safer” way of performing surgery, many hospitals have taken to the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System. However, numerous injuries and deaths have been linked to its usage. Our firm is on the cutting edge of litigation in this area, and The Lawrence Firm, PSC is a founding member of the da Vinci Robotic Surgery Litigation Group of the American Association for Justice.
- Duodenoscopes: These are flexible tubes inserted through the mouth, throat, and stomach and into the top of the small intestines (duodenum). The scopes are used during endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) to diagnose and treat problems with the pancreas and bile ducts. There have been bacterial infections associated with the use of duodenoscopes that have not been properly cleaned during the reprocessing of the devices.
- Inferior Vena Cava Filter: Otherwise known as an “IVC Filter,” this is a small, metal, cage-shaped device that is implanted into the inferior vena cava just below the kidneys. The IVC Filter is designed to be a removable device that captures blood clots and prevents them from reaching the lungs. However, it has been found that these IVC Filters tend to migrate or move and cause injuries to other bodily vessels. In other instances, the IVC Filters cannot be removed and cause further injuries to internal organs. As a result, many individuals have experienced injuries or death from IVC Filters, primarily those manufactured by Cook Select or Bard.
- Power Morcellators: There have been several concerns and recent recalls regarding power morcellators. These devices are used in gynecological surgeries to cut up tumors, organs, and other tissue into small pieces so they can be removed without the patient having to endure a large abdominal incision. Unfortunately, an increase in cancers has been seen after these procedures, as the devices spread small, previously undetected cancerous cells during the procedure. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is recommending that the use of power morcellators be suspended until more research is done. However, individuals who are already suffering from cancer due to these devices need to seek legal representation from an experienced firm like ours ASAP.
- An updated safety communication has been issued for laparoscopic uterine power morcellation in hysterectomy and myomectomy.
- Talc Powder: You may know Talc Powder better as Johnson’s Baby Powder or Shower to Shower. This powder has been linked to ovarian cancer, leading to the death of many women in the United States. If you or your loved one has developed ovarian cancer, you may have a claim against Johnson and Johnson.
Other Mass Torts
- AT&T Billing: There has been an alarming number of instances in which cellphone plan holders have been drastically overbilled over a certain period of time. Allegations against AT&T include cramming (adding fees that customers never ordered or knew about), overcharging, and other billing problems.
- Automobile Manufacturers: There seems to be an increasing number of automobile manufacturers failing to adhere to safety protocols as established within the United States. Our firm has handled cases involving the Volkswagen Diesel emissions, seat belt failures, and the failure of airbags to deploy.
- Data and Security Breaches: Several data and security breaches have occurred as a result of deficient safeguards and protocols in place by corporate America and insurance companies.
- Lumber Liquidators: Chinese wood flooring sold by Lumber Liquidators has emitted excessive levels of cancer-causing formaldehyde.
- Takata Airbag Recall: More than 17 million vehicles made by fourteen different automakers have been subjected to the recall of airbags in the driver’s side or front passenger’s side. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has called this “the largest and most complex safety recall in U.S. History.” Takata Airbags were installed from 2002 through 2015. These airbags have been shown to explode and cause serious injury, and in some cases, even death.
How Long Do Mass Tort Cases Take?
Mass tort cases are typically very complex claims and can take over a year, even multiple years, to resolve. There are numerous variables that can affect the amount of time it takes to recover compensation in one of these cases. These factors may include:
- The number of plaintiffs involved
- Whether the product in question requires expert testimony (i.e., faulty pharmaceuticals)
- The severity of the injuries
- Whether the injuries in question require medical validation
- The cooperation of the defendant to reach a fair settlement
- Whether attorneys must travel to conduct their investigations, collect evidence, and speak with key witnesses
What is the Average Compensation for Mass Tort Cases?
As each claim in a mass tort MDL case is assessed as a separate personal injury lawsuit, the amount of money awarded to each plaintiff can differ greatly. This can be beneficial for groups of people who have comparable claims against the same defendant but have incurred distinct losses. It enables each plaintiff to seek and receive compensation that is proportional to his or her losses and injuries. This means that a plaintiff who sustains hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages will be appropriately compensated for those losses, while a plaintiff who sustains only few thousand dollars in damages is also fairly compensated. What it ultimately depends on is the facts of your case and the ability of your lawyer to prove these facts.
Contact Our Mass Tort Law Firm Today
The mass tort attorneys at The Lawrence Firm, PSC work to help our clients understand not only what mass tort is, but what types of cases can be handled this way. However, while helping clients understand the major facets of the process, we shoulder the legal burden so they can focus on recovery and moving forward with their lives.
Our mass tort law firm houses the best mass tort attorneys in Kentucky and Ohio, serving clients in both states as well as all throughout the country. If you or a loved one has been injured due to the negligence of another, our lawyers are here to help you explore your legal options. Schedule a free consultation today by visiting us online or by giving us a call at 800-698-4054.
You Pay No Fees Unless We Win!
We are happy to offer a free consultation to evaluate your case. If you hire us as your legal counsel, we will represent you on a contingency-fee basis. You will pay no attorneys’ fees unless we recover financial damages.