Articles Posted in Products Liability

Our lawyers believe the AFFF lawsuits will reach a settlement in the near future.  No guarantees.  But that is our prediction.  We think many if not all defendants will offer reasonable AFF settlement amounts to firefighters in 2023.  This post is a look at where we are and gives an update below.  This post was last updated on May 16, 2023.

AFFF Lawsuit

Firefighting foam containing Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF) has been used for decades to extinguish fires involving fuels and other flammable liquids.  Our firefighting foam lawyers are continuing to investigate and pursue new lawsuits on behalf of firefighters who have been diagnosed with various forms of cancer, such as testicular cancer, kidney cancer, pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer, liver cancer, breast cancer, bladder cancer, lymphoma, leukemia or other injuries that have been linked to PFAS chemicals in AFFF.  The conventional wisdom is that AFFF class action lawsuits for firefighters may soon settle in whole or in part.

Hair relaxer lawsuits are a type of product liability lawsuit that alleges that hair relaxer products caused cancer or other health problems. Hair relaxers are chemical products that are used to straighten curly hair. They contain a number of harsh chemicals, including lye, which can be irritating to the skin and eyes. Some studies have linked hair relaxer use to an increased risk of cancer, including uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, and breast cancer.

Sister Study in October 2022

The first hair relaxer lawsuit was filed in 2017.  The litigation did not go far. That changed in October 2022. The Journal of the National Cancer Institute revealed a new study indicating a heightened risk of uterine cancer in women who frequently use chemical hair straighteners or relaxers. This was no small-time study done by small-time researchers.  The research was undertaken by specialists from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and analyzed data from over 33,000 women participating in the extensive, long-term study focused on women’s health. It is called the “Sister Study.”

This post was originally written in 2008.  We do not know of any active Chantix suicide lawsuits that are pending in 2023.

What the Chantix Suicide Lawsuits Were About

Chantix (varenicline) is a prescription medication developed by Pfizer to help people quit smoking. It works by reducing nicotine cravings and blocking the pleasurable effects of smoking. It worked well and Pfizer was printing money from the sales of the drug.  However, since its approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2006, Chantix was been linked to several serious side effects, including suicidal thoughts and behaviors, depression, and other neuropsychiatric issues.

Chief Judge Nancy J. Rosenstengel, who is the judge in the Paraquat MDL class action lawsuit,  announced that the first Paraquat bellwether trial will start on November 15, 2022.

Is There a Paraquat MDL Class Action?

Paraquat-1-410x1024There is a Paraquat MDL class action.  This means that federal Paraquat lawsuits are consolidated into an MDL on June 8, 2021. The plaintiffs sued primarily Chevron and Syngenta. Their Paraquat lawyers alleged failure to warn and defective design. The plaintiffs claimed their exposure to paraquat caused them to develop Parkinson’s disease.

Elmiron is a very popular prescription drug used by millions for the treatment of chronic bladder problems.

These lawsuits will likely settle in massive numbers in 2023.  We believe the average settlement values of these lawsuits will be between $300,000 and $400,000 with some of the cases reaching high six figures and low seven figures.

We have the latest news on the Elmiron MDL lawsuit in this post and talk about the Elmiron settlement we expect to see in 2023.

An article that John Bratt and I wrote has been accepted for publication in December in Trial, the flagship publication for the American Association of Justice. The article is about mediations in catastrophic personal injury cases. We finished what I hope is the final draft today.

John Cord’s Drug Recall Lawyer Blog reports that Plaintiffs in 23 Yasmin/Yaz birth control lawsuits filed a motion with the Judicial Panel on Multi-district Litigation requesting consolidation and/or coordination of 32 and counting federal Yasmin/Yaz lawsuits.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is getting heat because before she was elected to Congress in 2006, she spent much of her career as a lawyer working at a mega New York law firm representing the world’s largest cigarette company, Philip Morris. She apparently spends a good bit of time between 1995 to 1999 helping Philip Morris fight the Justice Department’s efforts to get the tobacco company to produce damaging research and other internal documents regarding its knowledge about the health risks of tobacco products.

My first reaction is that you shouldn’t judge people for the clients they represent. I defended drug companies during that same period and while I’m not proud of this, I’m not ashamed either. I’m sure Martin O’Malley is not ashamed of defending criminals. But Dorothy Samuels has a different take on it in the New York Times that I think deserves airing:

Professor Stephen Gillers of New York University Law School, one of the country’s leading legal ethics experts, distinguishes between publicly criticizing lawyers because of the people they represent, which he says he would not do, and how they carry out the representation.

We added on the Miller & Zois website the internal list that our lawyers keep of arbitrators and mediators in Maryland who we believe mediate or arbitrate personal injury cases.

As we make clear, this is not a list of our recommended mediators or arbitrators, just a collection of those that are doing the work. We refer to the list if arbitrating or mediating a case so it occurred to me that others might want to have the same option, be it another personal injury lawyer or even an insurance company.

The Maryland Daily Record reports that the Maryland Court of Appeals will hear a challenge to Maryland’s statutory cap on non-economic damages involving a lead paint case in Baltimore City.

I think it is interesting the Maryland high court granted cert in this case. I’m not optimistic. But boy would the landscape flip here if the Maryland Court of Appeals agrees these caps are unjust under Maryland’s Constitution.