Over 10,000 lawsuits have been filed against Johnson & Johnson over allegations that the DePuy ASR metal on metal hip implant provided to patients around the country and the world were knowingly defective before being brought to the market. Panish Shea & Boyle successfully represented the plaintiff in one of those cases earlier this year, gaining an $8.3 million jury decision for a client. And now, another bellwether trial is set to move forward at the beginning of 2014.
A bellwether trial is so-called because it is supposed to allow the opposing sides to get a sense of how proceedings are going to play out. The trial in question will take place in a New Jersey state court starting on January 13. That trial will find two lawsuits being combined due to their similarity to one another. Johnson & Johnson had attempted to separate the two, but a judge has decided to deny that motion.
The claims being made in the bellwether trial are indicative of those made in the thousands of other lawsuits that have been filed. The plaintiffs allege that their devices were susceptible to failure and that the metal fragments that resulted from the parts rubbing against one another may have further contributed to patient adversity.
The combined cases were allowed to continue as such because of the patient’s track record with the device and the similarities of the process they went through as a whole.