ASR Hip Implant Judge David Katz scheduled a federal court hearing for next Tuesday November 19, 2013 at 4:30pm in Toledo, Ohio. The hearing notice does not specify the subject matter of the hearing but it is expected that the terms of a proposed $4 billion will be released. It is unusual for a court to set a hearing at 4:30pm in a case of this magnitude. It is likely that it is set at that time because the financial markets will have closed for the day. Terms of a $4 billion payment by the Johnson & Johnson could affect the stock value of the publically traded company.
The proposed $4 billion settlement has been reported by Bloomberg News and the New York Times based upon unnamed sources. Only a few details of the proposed settlement were included in these preliminary reports. It was reported that under terms of the settlement DePuy and Johnson & Johnson would have a right to cancel the settlement unless at least 94% of those with pending lawsuits agreed to participate. This is a common provision in mass torts settlements and was a part of the Vioxx pain medication settlement with Merck a few years ago. Rough calculations indicate that an average payment to an individual who has had a metal on metal hip implant failure of a DePuy ASR would receive between $300,000 to $350,000. It is expected that the settlement would provide a scale so that those with more serious complications or those who had bilateral revision would receive larger settlement amounts.
Settlements of this type are not class action settlements so each person with a lawsuit would have to agree to “opt in” to the settlement and would be free to proceed to have an individual trial if they do agree to the settlement amounts. It is believed that this settlement offer will only apply to the 12,000 lawsuits pending in the U.S. courts not to those ASR implant patients around the world who do not have jurisdiction to file a lawsuit in the United States. Of those 12,000 lawsuits it is estimated that about 7,500 are on behalf of those who have had to have hip implants replaced. It is likely that those who have not had an implant failure requiring a replacement will have some rights to obtain compensation in the future if they have an implant failure. It is possible that the settlement will contain minimal or no compensation for those who have not suffered from a failure of their DePuy ASR metal implant.
The DePuy ASR metal on metal hip implant was recalled in 2010 after unusually high failure rates. The failures were caused by metal debris leaching from the implants causing damage to tissue and bone surrounding the implant. The chromium and cobalt from the implants causes necrosis of cells. This condition is called metallosis.
Anyone with an DePuy ASR hip implant should get legal advice as soon as possible regarding their legal rights to participate in this settlement. This blog is general information and should not be relied on to make individual legal decisions. I am happy to give individual opinions at no charge if readers would like to contact me. My law firm is continuing to accept new hip implant cases but a written contract is required for us to represent you. Contact us for more information. 800-748-7115
Admitted to both the California State Bar and the Florida State Bar, Joseph Saunders has also practiced in the United States District Court and the United States Court of Appeals. His philosophy is to provide aggressive, quality representation and seek fair compensation for individuals and their families who have suffered injury or death at the hands of insurance companies, large corporations, medical providers or governmental entities.