More than 9,000 women have sued over breast cancer drug Taxotere’s link to permanent hair loss, also known as alopecia. Plaintiffs contend that drug maker Sanofi-Aventis engaged in fraudulent misrepresentation regarding the safety and efficacy of Taxotere. To date, there is no concrete evidence that Taxotere or its generic equivalent is any more effective than comparable chemotherapy medications at treating breast cancer, but some studies show a heightened risk of one potentially disfiguring side effect — lasting hair loss.
Cancer survivors who have experienced permanent hair loss following treatment with Taxotere are encouraged to speak to a qualified attorney at Showard Law Firm. A successful Taxotere lawsuit can recoup compensation for hospital bills, lost wages, emotional suffering and other necessary damages. If your circumstances warrant legal action, your claim may join the ongoing Taxotere multidistrict litigation in Louisiana federal court.
Taxotere multidistrict litigation
As is often the case with large numbers of similar complaints against Big Pharma, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation found that consolidating Taxotere hair loss claims would promote efficiencies in the growing litigation. The JPML established MDL No.2740 Taxotere (Docetaxel) Products Liability Litigation in the fall of 2016, transferring 33 cases from numerous districts to the US District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. Judge Kurt D. Engelhardt was chosen to oversee the Taxotere MDL, which has now centralized nearly 9,200 cases for pretrial proceedings. However, he was nominated and recently appointed to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, and Judge Jane T. Milazzo is now overseeing the Taxotere MDL.
Multidistrict litigation is a common method used to expedite the resolution of many civil lawsuits that share allegations against common defendants. Mass tort proceedings allow both sides to pool resources, while helping to prevent duplicative discovery and inconsistent pretrial rulings.
Federal claims that meet eligibility requirements are transferred before Judge Milazzo, joining other Taxotere cases managed by the Plaintiffs Steering Committee. Multidistrict litigation affords many benefits to plaintiffs, and unlike a Taxotere class action lawsuit, each case in the MDL is tried on its own merits. A class action, on the other hand, is tried as one case, in which all plaintiffs are bound to a single outcome.
If you believe that you or a loved one are eligible to file a Taxotere lawsuit against Sanofi, it’s crucial to consult with a knowledgeable attorney at Showard Law Firm without delay. All potential legal actions must be filed within a certain time period or risk forfeiting the opportunity to pursue monetary reparations.
Taxotere bellwether trials
The first bellwether trial in the Taxotere MDL is slated for May 2019. Bellwether trials are common procedures in mass torts, as they allow both sides to see how the court perceives the arguments, evidence and testimony presented. The lawsuits selected for bellwether trials are carefully chosen to represent the allegations leveled and issues of fact in the broader range of MDL cases. Bellwether trial outcomes are good indicators on the direction of the litigation, but these verdicts are in no way decisive in how following lawsuits will result.
When bellwether plaintiffs win large judgements, the defendants may be more inclined to quickly settle the remaining cases to avert a potentially long series of costly verdicts. In 2016, the honorable Engelhardt appointed committees within the MDL to engage in settlement discussions.
If the Taxotere bellwethers do not incite settlement talks, Judge Milazzo will likely dissolve the multidistrict litigation in Louisiana and remand all remaining complaints back to their home courts for later trials.
Bellwether trials in the Taxotere multidistrict ligation are scheduled to proceed soon. Judge Milazzo issued a case management order recently, dictating the schedule leading up to the first trial date on May 13, 2019. The court will hold additional trials starting September 16, 2019; January 27, 2020; May 11, 2020; and September 14, 2020.
State centralized Taxotere litigation
In August of 2018, the New Jersey Supreme Court moved to streamline litigation for some 350 Taxotere claims involving permanent hair loss that were filed in the state. The multi-county litigation (MCL) is presided over by Judge James F. Hyland in Middlesex County. This legal process is equivalent to the Taxotere MDL but is held in state rather than federal court.
Protect your rights, call Showard Law Firm today
Battling breast cancer is a harrowing experience on its own. When consumers aren’t given all the facts about potential risks and side effects of pharmaceutical products, manufacturers can be held liable for their transgressions and forced to pay monetary damages.
Women who were prescribed Taxotere chemotherapy before December 2015 and have since suffered permanent hair loss may be entitled to significant money damages. Showard Law Firm can help you seek justice, and leverage years of successful results handling dangerous drug litigation. Reach out for a private, no-obligation consultation free of charge today.
Additional Resources on Taxotere MultiDistrict Litigation:
- Lexology, New Jersey MCL Update: Three New Consolidated Litigations in New Jersey https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=f71cff51-32a1-4862-aa30-5b0f12bd2b6f
- Reuters, Drugmakers renew call for court to dismiss Taxotere MDL complaint https://www.reuters.com/article/products-taxotere/drugmakers-renew-call-for-court-to-dismiss-taxotere-mdl-complaint-idUSL2N1LE1AZ
- US District Court Eastern District of Louisiana, MDL – 2740 Taxotere (Docetaxel) Products Liability Litigation http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/case-information/mdl-mass-class-action/taxotere
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