Rottenstein Law Group Acknowledges Opposition to Multidistrict Litigation for Federal Fosamax Femur Fracture Lawsuits
(New York, NY, April 25, 2011) The Rottenstein Law Group, which represents clients with claims stemming from the severe side effects of the drug Fosamax, has learned that some plaintiffs oppose the consolidation of federal lawsuits against Merck, the manufacturer of Fosamax, for pre-trial proceedings.
On March 23, 2011, Merck moved the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate all federal Fosamax lawsuits into a single Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) proceeding for the purposes of pre-trial discovery. Merck is headquartered in New Jersey, and requested that all the lawsuits be sent to United States District Judge Garrett Brown of the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, where many of the existing lawsuits are currently pending. Merck proposed the United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, before United States District Judge Rebecca Doherty, as an alternative.
Two plaintiffs who filed individual lawsuits, Patrick Welch and Betty Miller, have opposed Merck’s motion, arguing that MDL consolidation will complicate and significantly delay the resolution of their lawsuits. Miller’s case is pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, before United States District Judge Michael Reagan. Miller’s is the first Fosamax femur fracture lawsuit scheduled for trial, with proceedings scheduled to begin in April, 2012. Miller argues that MDL will push back the trial of her matter. Welch, whose case is pending in the Eastern District of Missouri, argues separately that Fosamax femur fracture lawsuits should not be consolidated because there are too few of them. The suggested alternative to femur fracture lawsuit MDL is to add these new cases to the MDL for Fosamax osteonecrosis cases from 2006.
MDL is an option that allows for greater efficiency when handling numerous lawsuits by different plaintiffs against one defendant or a common group of defendants. Unlike a class action lawsuit, MDL does not distribute equal damages to all parties involved; instead, it consolidates all pre-trial disclosures and eliminates inconsistent pre-trial rulings by multiple judges. In effect, MDL speeds up the litigation process for all involved, and gives plaintiffs the ability to maintain their individual lawsuits to take their cases to trial separately if they choose to do so.
Merck’s osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) MDL consolidated more than 900 plaintiffs’ cases in a New York federal court. The court excluded all bone fracture claims because it found that how Fosamax allegedly causes ONJ differs from how it might cause femur fractures.
The Rottenstein Law Group advises anyone with a friend or family member who has been prescribed Fosamax or another osteoporosis drug to recommend to that person that he or she consult a physician immediately, then speak to a qualified personal injury lawyer. The Rottenstein Law Group lawyers have a total of more than 25 years of experience fighting for the rights of clients who have suffered harm due to the negligence of powerful corporations. Affected individuals are advised to keep apprised of the latest news concerning the Fosamax femur fracture lawsuits by checking the Fosamax Femur Fracture Lawsuit Information Center for updated information. The site is equipped with easy-to-use social media features which will enable users to spread the word about the dangers of Fosamax.
About the Rottenstein Law Group
The Rottenstein Law Group is a New York-based law firm that represents clients in mass tort actions. The firm was founded by Rochelle Rottenstein, a lawyer with over two decades of experience in compassionate representation of clients in consumer product injury, mass tort, and class action law suits. For more information, please visit their Web site, or call (888) 9-ROT-LAW.
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