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Update On Status Of Generic Ranitidine Manufacturers’ and Retail Distributors’ Motion To Dismiss

March 6, 2021 – The Court has still not ruled on the motion to dismiss made by big-name distributors such as Walgreens and Walmart, but we are watching for the ruling and will update when it comes.  Reference: “United States District Court.” 20-MD-2924-Rosenberg – In Re: Zantac (Ranitidine) Products Liability Litigation | Southern District of Florida | United States District Court, 5 Mar. 2021, www.flsd.uscourts.gov/zantac.

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Number Of Zantac Cases In MDL As Of 2/17/2021

February 17, 2021 – The United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation reported at their panel that there were currently 562 cases pending in the Zantac Lawsuit MDL. Reference: “Zantac Lawsuit: February 2021 Update – Zantac Cancer Claims.” Drug Watch, www.drugwatch.com/zantac/lawsuits/.

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| Read Time: 5 minutes | Car Accident

Examples of Wrongful Death Cases

Losing a loved one is a difficult thing for anybody. Losing a loved one due to someone else’s negligence can be even harder. Lives are cut short every day for many reasons, but losing a loved one in an accident caused by someone else’s negligent actions is especially tragic. When such an event happens, the family of the person who died is entitled to compensation. Wrongful death suits occur when someone who has lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence files a claim against the individual responsible for the death. In 2019 more than 170,000 people lost their lives in the US from accidents or unintentional injuries. In fact, such accidents are the third leading cause of death in the US. While accidents happen in an almost infinite number of different ways, some wrongful death causes are more common than others. Here are some examples of wrongful death causes. Car Accidents There is no way to ignore the fact that driving a vehicle can be dangerous. While many of us may go years without getting into a car accident, others are not so lucky. Many wrongful death lawsuit cases happen each year after fatal car accidents. Generally, if a driver’s negligent actions cause a death on the road, they are liable for the wrongful death.  The number of car accident fatalities each year may surprise you. More than 38,000 people die in car accidents each year. In 2020, while there was less traffic volume than normal due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of vehicle fatalities rose. Some experts say that the increase in fatalities was due, in part, to increased rates of speeding in the US. If a loved one dies after a car accident that someone else negligently causes, you are entitled to compensation through a wrongful death claim. Some of the most common causes of death after car accidents stem from things like: Brain injuries, Neck injuries, and Internal bleeding. The two best things you and your loved ones can do to avoid suffering a fatal injury in a car accident are wearing your seatbelt and avoiding distractions while driving. Defective Products Defective products lead to numerous wrongful death claims each year. Most consumer products producers are responsible for ensuring consumer safety as long as their products are used as intended. Some products are inherently dangerous, but other times, a consumer product can have a fatal defect. For example, a cooking utensil that leaches deadly chemicals into food as it is used as intended can lead to a wrongful death claim against a manufacturer. Similarly, a safety feature in a vehicle that doesn’t work properly, like a seatbelt that comes unbuckled easily in an accident, can easily cause fatal injuries and leave the manufacturer liable for wrongful death claims. Even an inherently dangerous consumer product, such as a gun, comes with an assumption of safety with proper use. A defective part in a gun that causes a chambered round to go off without the user pulling the trigger can easily lead to a wrongful death claim.  When a manufacturer of goods is made aware of a dangerous defect in their product, they are responsible for notifying the public of that defect and recalling any defective products. They are also responsible for replacing those products free of charge. Boeing became responsible for numerous wrongful death claims after a design flaw caused some of their 737 Max commercial aircraft to crash in 2018. Since then, in addition to settling wrongful death claims, Boeing has recalled and replaced all of the affected 737 Max airplanes. If you want to keep track of any consumer product recalls to help ensure your safety, the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is the best place to do so. The CPSC website contains a database of all consumer product recalls. You can even subscribe to the CPSC to get a newsletter of product recalls relevant to you. Workplace Accidents Unfortunately, many accidents happen in the workplace. While all employers must provide their employees with a safe workspace, some employers fail to do so. Even an employer who takes all necessary precautions can have a fatal accident occur at their workplace. In addition, some jobs and workspaces are more dangerous than others. For example, a construction site will typically be more dangerous than an average office.  While the vast majority of workplace injuries are nonfatal each year, the number of fatal injuries is still significant. Employers in the US reported 2.8 million nonfatal injuries in 2019. During the same period, however, a total of 5,333 workers died due to workplace injuries. If a loved one dies after a workplace accident, you can file a claim through their employer’s workers’ compensation program. Most employers in the US are required to maintain workers’ compensation insurance. However, if a loved one dies due to negligence by someone other than their employer or coworker, or if the employer did not carry workers’ compensation insurance, you may be able to seek additional compensation through a wrongful death claim. Medical Malpractice Medical malpractice commonly gives rise to wrongful death claims. Medical malpractice is estimated to take roughly 250,000 lives each year. Generally speaking, medical malpractice occurs when an error in medical treatment leads to injury. If the patient dies due to a medical error, their loved ones are entitled to compensation through a medical malpractice wrongful death claim. To file a successful wrongful death claim based on medical malpractice, one must prove that the death was caused by a medical provider’s mistake that amounts to a violation of the medical standard of care. Pedestrian Accidents Another common source of wrongful death claims is pedestrian accidents. Unlike when a car strikes another vehicle, when a car strikes a pedestrian, the pedestrian does not have the protection that a vehicle offers. Thus, a pedestrian receives the full force of impact when a car strikes them. As a result, it is not uncommon for injuries to a pedestrian after being struck by...

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Case Against Belviq to Continue in Louisiana Court

A court in Louisiana granted the defendant’s motion to dismiss two of three product defect claims in a lawsuit. Plaintiffs Stephanie and Robert Fuller accused the defendant, Eisai Inc. and Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc., of design defects, manufacturing defects, and safety misrepresentations related to its drug Belviq. The weight loss drug is allegedly linked to breast cancer, according to the plaintiffs. The court ruled that the Fullers did not provide sufficient evidence for their manufacturing defect claims, as well as their claims about breach of warranty. The design defect claim is expected to continue to the Eastern District of Louisiana court. Soure: Drug Watch

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Dangerous Drugs

Increasing Number of Veterans Filing Zantac Lawsuits

January 19, 2021 — Veterans are increasingly filing Zantac lawsuits claiming the drug has caused cancer. The lawsuits allege that the manufacturers knew the active ingredient in Zantac, ranitidine could form a toxic chemical called N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) inside the human stomach, but kept this information from the public.  NDMA is known to cause cancer in animals and may cause cancer in humans. Zantac has been available by prescription and over-the-counter, and it’s been available in the United States since the early 1980s. It treats several disorders caused by too much stomach acid. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had asked all manufacturers to withdraw Zantac and all ranitidine products from the U.S. market in April 2020 because the drug could expose people to unacceptable levels of NDMA. After the FDA announced the market withdrawal, the Defense Health Agency (DHA) told military health beneficiaries to stop taking Zantac (ranitidine) and look for an alternative stomach acid-reducing medication.  Veterans are more likely to suffer gastrointestinal problems such as such as heartburn, indigestion, acid reflux, gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD) and irritable bowel syndrome, and they are more likely to take gastrointestinal medications. For example, some studies show that veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) often have GERD, acid reflux and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), according to Dr. Jaimie L. Gradus of the National Center for PTSD, VA Boston Healthcare System and colleagues published in Epidemiology. Drugs for GI problems include proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as Nexium and Prilosec or H2 blockers such as Zantac. The VA’s blog said that one in six veterans uses PPIs to ease heartburn or acid reflux. They are among the most prescribed medications in the VA.  Lawyers who accept these cases say their veteran clients have been diagnosed with a variety of cancers after using Zantac. Their doctors told them that they had no family history or genetic risks for the disease and that the cause was most likely from an environmental exposure such as Zantac. Many of the veterans who filed Zantac cancer lawsuits took Zantac that had been prescribed at the VA. Cancers potentially linked to Zantac include: Bladder cancer and bladder removal  Breast cancer  Colon cancer  Esophageal cancer Kidney cancer and kidney removal  Liver cancer  Melanoma  Ovarian cancer  Prostate cancer  Stomach cancer Reference: Turner, T., Veterans Increasingly Filing Zantac Lawsuits. Retrieved November 19, 2020, https://www.consumernotice.org/news/veterans-filing-zantac-lawsuits/

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Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Kentucky?

When you lose a loved one due to someone else’s actions, you may experience many emotions. Naturally, you feel grief and anger. You may also wonder how you can achieve justice for your loved one and prevent others from experiencing similar harm. At Gerling Law, we can’t take away your pain. However, we can help you pursue justice. We can help you hold the person who caused your pain accountable for their actions. Our compassionate attorneys have been representing victims and their families for decades. If you would like to speak with one of our knowledgeable lawyers, call anytime for a free consultation. When many clients initially speak with us, they’re not sure if they can sue for their loved one’s death. Here, we provide an overview of who can file a lawsuit for wrongful death and what such legal action involves. What Is a Wrongful Death Lawsuit? The goal of a wrongful death lawsuit is to compensate the surviving family for the harm they have suffered. Before considering a Kentucky wrongful death lawsuit, you should know what the term actually means. Wrongful death is the death of a person caused by the negligent or wrongful act of another. This wrongful act could be unintentional or purposeful. In other words, someone does not have to intend to kill your loved one for it to be a wrongful death. A person or company might be responsible for your loved one’s death. For instance, if a drunk driver hits your loved one, that individual should be held responsible. However, if a sober driver hit your loved one after her brakes malfunctioned, the auto manufacturer may be liable. Who Can File a Kentucky Wrongful Death Lawsuit? In Kentucky, the personal representative (executor) of the deceased’s estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit. The probate court names a personal representative based on the instructions in the deceased’s will or the preference of the judge. While the personal representative files the wrongful death lawsuit, most of the lawsuit proceeds go to the deceased’s estate and surviving family members. Funeral and burial expenses, as well as attorney fees, go to the estate. But then the remainder of the award goes to the deceased person’s surviving family members. Payment is awarded according to these rules: All to the surviving spouse if there are no surviving children; If there are a surviving spouse and surviving children, half to the spouse and half divided among the children; If there is no surviving spouse, all divided among the children; or  If there is no surviving spouse or children, all to the surviving parents. If there is no surviving spouse, children, or parents, the wrongful death award goes to the estate. After paying debts, the award will be distributed according to the deceased’s will or intestate succession rules. What Damages Are Available? A wrongful death lawsuit compensates family members for the harm they have suffered as a result of their loved one’s death. You can sue for these damages in a wrongful death case: Pain and suffering, Loss of companionship, Loss of support, Loss of care, Funeral and burial expenses, and Attorney fees. You may also be able to request punitive damages for intentional harm or gross negligence. These damages go beyond compensating your family for the harm suffered. Instead, they serve the goal of punishing the person for their wrongful actions. The State may choose to criminally prosecute the defendant, but that is a separate legal action. A criminal prosecution punishes a wrongdoer by taking away their freedom. A wrongful death lawsuit is a civil action that will not put the defendant behind bars but seeks to financially compensate your family for the death of your loved one. If you think you might have a Kentucky wrongful death claim, you should contact an experienced attorney. At Gerling Law, we have helped grieving family members with wrongful death claims in Kentucky for decades. We have the experience to get the results you deserve while showing you compassion and respect. Contact our law firm for a free consultation. You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions and get to know our knowledgeable legal team. If we think we can help you, you should know that we work on contingency. This means you owe us nothing until we win your case. Review our decades of winning cases here, and call us when you’re ready to talk. Don’t trust the fight for justice and your family’s financial future with just anyone. Remember: Go with Experience. Go with Gerling.®

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MDL Federal Judge Dismisses Zantac Design Defect Claims Based on Preemption But Allows Repleading

January 11, 2021 – Federal MDL Judge Rosenberg of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida ruled that design defect claims filed against the manufacturers of Zantac (ranitidine) are preempted by federal law because they seek to challenge the drugs’ FDA approved formula. The judge granted the motion by Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer Inc and Boehringer Ingelheim to dismiss all state economic damages claims and all claims alleging design defect. But, the judge granted plaintiffs leave to replead their design defect claims that are based on the drugs’ labeling to file narrower design defect claims, which could include labeling changes the defendants could have made without FDA approval. The judge also dismissed state law claims seeking to recoup monetary losses from buying over-the-counter ranitidine, finding the Congress didn’t intend for any state to classify a claim as a product liability claim when the plaintiff was not personally injured. Reference: Name Brand Drug Cos. Ax Labeling Claims In Zantac MDL.  January 12, 2021, www.law360.com/productliability/articles/1343567/name-brand-drug-cos-ax-labeling-claims-in-zantac-mdl?nl_pk=4ea5443d-d995-4317-90cc-b8209e697bbb&utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=productliability

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Timeline of the First Zostavax Trials

July 2021 — The second trial for Group B is scheduled to begin around July 2021. May 2021 — The first trial in the Group B Bellwether Trial is scheduled to begin around May 2021. March 2021 — The third trial for Group A is scheduled to begin around March. Additionally, the court is scheduled to select two cases from Group B that will go to trial by March 2021. November 2020 — The first trial in the Group A Bellwether Trial is scheduled to begin around November 2020.  The amount of cases in the Zostavax MDL is now over 1,800. January 2021 — The second trial for Group A is scheduled to begin around January 2021. May 29, 2020 — 4 cases were to be selected for the Group B Bellwether Trial by May 29, 2020.  The court is scheduled to select two cases that will go to trial by March 2021, and the first trial should begin around May 2021.  The second is scheduled to begin around July 2021. May 15, 2020 — Judge Bartle ordered that the core fact discovery for Group B’s eight selected cases be completed by May 15, 2020. April 2020 — There are estimated to be around 1300 cases already filed in the Zostavax MDL. December 2019 — Judge Bartle has ordered that eight cases from Group B should have been selected to undergo core fact discovery by December 2019. November 29, 2019 — Judge Bartle ordered that after the core fact discovery of the initial sixteen cases from Group A, six will be selected to be a part of Group A’s Bellwether Trial by November 29, 2019. July 2019 — After Merck & Co. refused to turn over records on all “adverse events reports” which could indicate its guilt, plaintiffs filed a motion to compel.  Judge Bartle granted the motion, allowing the plaintiffs their first victory and access to the reports in trial. May 31, 2019 — Judge Bartle has ordered that sixteen cases from Group A should have been selected to undergo core fact discovery by May 31, 2019. August 2018 — A Zostavax Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) was created in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and assigned to the U.S. District Judge Harvey.  This followed a motion by Merck & Co. to consolidate the Zostavax cases pending in federal courts, which the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation approved. 2016 — The first Zostavax lawsuits began to be filed against Merck & Co., claiming that the vaccination caused unforeseen side effects or effects that Merck & Co. failed to warn about. Reference: Miller, Ronald V. “Shingles Lawsuit October 2020 Update: Federal Court Trials on Tap.” Maryland Injury Lawyer Blog, 29 Oct. 2020, www.marylandinjurylawyerblog.com/zostavax-lawsuit-update.html.

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Taxotere Trial Schedule Update December 21, 2020

December 21, 2020 — The Court continued the second bellwether trial. Reference:  “United States District Court.” MDL – 2740 Taxotere (Docetaxel) Products Liability Litigation | Eastern District of Louisiana | United States District Court, 28 Dec. 2020, www.laed.uscourts.gov/case-information/mdl-mass-class-action/taxotere

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Merck & Co. Ordered to Disclose Internal Emails In Zostavax Lawsuit

December 23, 2020 — Judge Harvey Bartle ruled that all but part of one of the 22 documents in dispute were not shielded by the attorney-client privilege.  Accordingly, Merck & Co. is required to disclose internal emails about potential changes to the label of Zostavax, which could reveal its knowledge of the adverse effects its vaccine was causing long before it actually made the label change in 2014. Reference: Pierson, Brendan. “Merck Must Turn over Emails in Zostavax MDL, despite Claims of Privilege.” Reuters, Thomson Reuters, 24 Dec. 2020, www.reuters.com/article/health-zostavax/merck-must-turn-over-emails-in-zostavax-mdl-despite-claims-of-privilege-idUSL1N2J41FA.

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