WTK Connect

This blog provides updates and important insights about products liability, commercial, and consumer litigation.  It aims to educate our audience on the developments in these areas as well as to provide the audience with unique perspectives from seasoned defense attorneys. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  • United States Supreme Court Rejects Attempt to Circumvent CAFA
    Dec 31, 2013 | Topic: Class Actions
    The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Standard Fire Insurance Co. v. Knowles, No. 11-1450, 2013 U.S. LEXIS 2370 (U.S. Mar. 19, 2013) marks a victory for out-of-state corporate defendants facing state court class actions. The Court addressed whether “a class-action plaintiff who stipulates, prior to certification of the class, that he, and the class he seeks to represent, will not seek damages that exceed $5 million in total” removes the case from the Class Action Fairness Act’s (“CAFA”) scope.  (Id. at *5.) 
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  • California Supreme Court Mandates Use of Daubert-Like Standards for Experts
    Dec 25, 2013 | Topics: Class Actions, Pharmaceutical / Medical Devices, Product Liability
    A recent California Supreme Court opinion will not only have a profound impact on the evidentiary landscape for expert testimony, but will also create a significant advantage for corporate defendants in the products liability context. In Sargon Enterprises, Inc. v. University of Southern California (2012) 55 Cal.4th 747 (“Sargon”), the Supreme Court unanimously affirmed that state court judges are “gatekeepers” of expert testimony, and that they are required to examine such testimony as to its reliability, methodology, and assistance to the jury. 
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  • First Trial Over Hip Replacement Device Results in $8.3 Million Jury Verdict, but no Punitive Damages
    Jan 1, 2013 | Topic: Pharmaceutical / Medical Devices
    More than 10,000 lawsuits have been filed over the ASR XL ball-and-socket hip implant manufactured by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., and Plaintiff Loren Kransky’s case was the first trial in the mass litigation (Case No. BC456086, Los Angeles County Superior Court).  Kransky, a retired prison guard, claimed that the metal-on-metal device left residue in his hip socket, afflicting him with potentially lethal metal poisoning.
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  • Food Labeling Lawsuits a Growing Trend
    Jan 1, 2013 | Topic: Class Actions
    An increasing number of lawsuits have been filed over "natural" terms used to promote various food, beverage, and personal care products, particularly if the product contains genetically engineered ingredients.  Recently filed complaints claiming as false or misleading a product that has been labeled, marketed, or otherwise promoted as "natural” include:  (D. Colo.) - class action complaint alleging Pepperidge Farm "mistakenly or misleadingly represented that its Cheddar Goldfish crackers . . . 
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  • Victory and Setback for Medical Device Manufacturers
    Jan 1, 2013 | Topic: Pharmaceutical / Medical Devices
    Medical device manufacturers have another case they can rely upon to strengthen their argument that any strict liability design defect claims involving implantable medical devices should be dismissed.  Garrett v. Howmedica Osteonics Corp. (2013) 214 Cal.App.4th 173, a recent California Court of Appeal decision out of the Second District, joins a line of appellate decisions throughout California excluding strict liability design defect claims for implantable medical devices.
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