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Case Number: 1:23-cv-01600-LMM
Judge: Leigh Martin May
Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (Fulton County)
Defendant's Attorney: No appearance
Description: Atlanta, Georgia personal injury lawyer represented Plaintiff who sued Defendants on product liability theories.
"Teva's business inherently exposes it to potential product liability claims, and in recent years the number of product liability claims asserted against Teva has increased. Teva maintains a program of insurance, which may include commercial insurance, self-insurance (including direct risk retention), or a combination of both approaches, in amounts and on terms that it believes are reasonable and prudent in light of its business and related risks. However, Teva sells, and will continue to sell, pharmaceuticals that are not covered by insurance; in addition, it may be subject to claims for which insurance coverage is denied as well as claims that exceed its policy limits. Product liability coverage for pharmaceutical companies is becoming more expensive and increasingly difficult to obtain. As a result, Teva may not be able to obtain the type and amount of commercial insurance it desires, or any commercial insurance on reasonable terms, in all of its markets.
Teva and/or its subsidiaries, including Watson Laboratories, Inc. (“Watson”) and Actavis Elizabeth LLC (“Actavis”), have been named as defendants in approximately 4,000 product liability lawsuits brought against them and other manufacturers by approximately 4,400 plaintiffs claiming injuries (including allegations of neurological disorders, such as tardive dyskinesia) from the long-term use of metoclopramide (the generic form of Reglan®). For over 20 years, the FDA-approved label for metoclopramide has contained warning language about the risk of tardive dyskinesia, and that the risk of developing the disorder increases with duration of treatment and total cumulative dose. In February 2009, the FDA announced that manufacturers of metoclopramide would be required to revise the label, including the addition of a “black box” warning about the risk of tardive dyskinesia resulting from long-term usage. Teva expects to be dismissed from at least some of the cases on the basis that some plaintiffs cannot demonstrate that they used a Teva product.
Approximately 40% of the plaintiffs are parties to cases against Teva that are part of a mass tort proceeding in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. In addition, there are mass tort proceedings under way in state courts in California and New Jersey. The California litigation includes about half of the total plaintiffs. In the New Jersey proceeding, the trial court granted the defendants' motion to dismiss, on federal preemption grounds, all claims other than those based on an alleged failure to timely update the label. The appellate court affirmed this dismissal. On April 11, 2016, the New Jersey Supreme Court heard oral argument on Teva's further appeal of the decision, and on August 22, 2016, affirmed with respect to the failure to update claims. In the Philadelphia County proceedings, one case is scheduled for trial beginning in March 2017, and nine other cases have trial dates scheduled in 2017, the first of which will begin in June. Two preference trials in the California proceedings are scheduled for February and March 2017. Actavis has recently reached an agreement in principle to resolve the majority of the cases pending against it."
SEC filing by Teva