Levaquin Class Action Lawsuit: Is there or will there ever be one?
Levaquin litigation is taking place in several venues throughout the United States because this popular broad-spectrum antibiotic has been implicated in a large number of side effects involving rotator cuff tears, tendon damage and tendon rupture. There are, however, a number of different types of litigation in progress and the question arises about whether there is a class action suit or will there be one.
Levaquin Multidistrict litigation in Minnesota
Levaquin litigation continues in the multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the District of Minnesota. The May 12, 2011 order by Judge Tunhein granted the plaintiff, John Schedin’s, request to unseal court documents for those admitted during trial, but not discussed during testimony, as well as his punitive damages claim. This new order lifts the prior protective order placed on many of these documents so the public and possibly other plaintiffs filing Levaquin product liability lawsuits may now access them.
Levaquin mass tort litigation in New Jersey
In New Jersey where all pending Levaquin litigation filed in the State have been designated as a mass tort, first trial is expected in the fall, either late August or early September, 2011. Even with all this litigation underway many Levaquin users who have been affected by the serious side effects of the antibiotic are wondering if there is a class action lawsuit against the drug’s manufacturer, Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceuticals.
Levaquin litigation on an individual basis thus far
So far all the current Levaquin lawsuits being filed throughout the United States are by individuals and families who have suffered from the serious side effects related to this drug. Most notably tendon ruptures and tendinitis relating to the first “black box” warning placed on the drug’s label by the FDA in 2008.
Levaquin class action lawsuit filed but transferred to MDL
There was a case reportedly filed on April 8, 2010 as a class action complaint. Lisa Presley claims that while taking Levaquin in 2008 she suffered from severe and permanent damage from tendinitis in her Achilles tendons. She filed her suit on behalf of herself and others similarly situated against Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceuticals Inc., a subunit of Johnson and Johnson, in the Beaumont Division of the Eastern District of Texas. However, this case does not appear to have been certified as a class action, and was transferred in September 2010 to be part of the MDL in Minnesota.
No Levaquin class action lawsuits
There does not appear to be any other Levaquin class action lawsuits and most Levaquin Lawyers appear to be advocating individual suits because although the claims may be similar the injuries suffered vary with each individual. A class action lawsuit is a type of lawsuit where one or more members of a class bring the suit to court on behalf of a larger group that have all been harmed in some way by the entities being sued. A class action lawsuit must be authorized by a judge.
Class actions can be beneficial for the right kind of cases, especially in those where there was minimal loss and the cost to pursue the case is not worth it as an individual. However, collectively in a class action suit, where all the minimal losses are added together into one large lawsuit, the case becomes worthwhile to pursue. Attorneys can recover their fees, plaintiffs can get some recovery of their damages, and it creates a big enough risk for the defendants that they may wish to settle the case.
The downside to class action lawsuits is that members of the class do not have control over how the suit is handled or what settlement is reached. Also members of the class might be included in the action even if they did not receive any notice of the action which would hinder them filing a suit individually. For those who have suffered a significant injury that may be different or more extensive than others and have lost a lot of money it may be better to file an individual or private action in order to be able to exercise more control over the case.
Levaquin lawsuit jury awards $1.8 million
To date only one Levaquin case has gone to trial and the jury found in favor of the plaintiff, John Schedin, awarding him $1.8 million in damages. Anyone who has suffered from a serious, painful, or debilitating Levaquin side effect is encouraged to speak with an experienced Levaquin lawyer to understand their rights and how best to take their claim to court.