You have been probably reading alot lately about the mesh and the fact that it is a Multi District litigation. In fact that is what this lawsuit is. The vaginal mesh is not a class action lawsuit. Your case is filed locally and then moved to the appropriate MDl that the manufacturer of your vaginal mesh has been assigned to.
What is a MUlti District litigation ?
Multidistrict litigation is a procedure utilized in the federal court system to transfer to one federal judge all pending civil cases of a similar type filed throughout the United States. The decision whether cases should be transferred is made by a panel of seven federal judges appointed by the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation meets periodically to review requests that cases be consolidated for pretrial matters pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1407
Vaginal mesh MDL’S
In December 2008, all Mentor ObTape lawsuits pending in federal courts were consolidated for MDL in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, before the Honorable Judge Clay D. Land. In October 2010, 36 lawsuits against Bard (manufacturer of one brand of vaginal mesh) were consolidated for MDL in the Southern District of West Virginia; the number of included cases has since grown to nearly 300. The first vaginal mesh bellwether trial against Bard is scheduled to begin on February 15, 2013. Later, in February 2012, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation created three additional MDLs in the Southern District of West Virginia; the defendants are: American Medical Systems; Boston Scientific; and Ethicon. Also in October 2010, Judge Carol E. Higbee of the Superior Court of New Jersey ruled in favor of centralized management for all current and future complaints against manufacturers Johnson &Johnson and Bard (more than 400 such cases have currently been filed). The New Jersey cases are not part of a federal MDL, but are being managed on a state level.
A motion has been filed to create a sixth transvaginal mesh MDL, involving lawsuits over Coloplast pelvic mesh, and a panel of federal judges will meet later this month to consider whether the cases should be consolidated for pretrial proceedings and centralized before the same judge in West Virginia who is presiding over cases involving similar products sold by other manufacturers.
To Summarize the vaginal mesh MDL
There are currently four different MDLs (multidistrict litigations) centralized before Chief District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia, involving lawsuits over transvaginal mesh products sold by C.R. Bard, American Medical Systems (AMS), Boston Scientific and Ethicon.
A fifth MDL, which was established in 2004 for lawsuits involving Mentor ObTape, is centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia. However, many of the Mentor ObTape lawsuits have already settled and the litigation is at a very advanced stage.
Update on Vaginal Mesh Proceedings
Judge Issues Order to Proceed with Discovery in Vaginal Mesh MDL
Emma Gonzalez | July 6th, 2012 |
On June 14, 2012, Chief District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin, who presides over the U.S. District Court for the Western District of West Virginia, issued a pretrial order to proceed with discovery processes in the transvaginal mesh lawsuit MDL. In laymen’s terms, this means that lawyers for the plaintiffs, who allege a variety of vaginal mesh problems, are now able to request evidence, documentation and other paperwork from product manufactures and defendant companies.
Discovery to seek evidence of vaginal mesh problems
True to name, discovery is a legal term for the pretrial process of “discovering” evidence from the opposing party. In this case, Judge Goodwin has authorized vaginal mesh attorneys to seek depositions, interrogatories (fact-gathering questionnaires), and other supporting documentation from vaginal mesh manufacturers and other named defendants. Judge Goodwin’s order is a very important step for the MDL, as it allows counsel to prepare for the first trials.
Judge presides over four transvaginal mesh lawsuit MDL’s
Judge Goodwin will preside over several transvaginal mesh lawsuit MDL’s – those against American Medical Systems, Boston Scientific, C.R. Bard, and Ethicon. While Judge Goodwin has been assigned to the C.R. Bard MDL since 2010, it was not until 2012 that the other three were consolidated and appended to his court docket. The four MDL’s consolidate cases from thousands of women, and currently number 333 against AMS, 182 against Boston Scientific, 411 against C.R. Bard, and 253 against Ethicon. MDL numbers are growing fast, and this rapid rate is not expected to decrease in the near future.
Vaginal mesh attorneys cite range of complications
MDL plaintiffs allege several vaginal mesh problems, among them pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence aggravated by vaginal mesh. Additionally, women report chronic infection, bleeding, vaginal scarring, severe discomfort, and pain during intercourse. For some, what was meant to be a solution to their problems results in device erosion – deterioration of the implant – or extrusion, in other words, dislocation of the implant to such a point that it protrudes into the vaginal canal. In the worst of cases, women allege that their defective implants cannot be completely removed, even after multiple surgeries.
It is important to understand that a local lawyer is not necessary for the Vaginal mesh lawsuits. That lawyer will not necessarily be a part of the proceedings but, will most likely be seniding your case to another law firm that is equipped to handle mass torts.
Lead Counsels and the vaginal mesh MDL
On April 13th, Chief Judge Joseph R. Goodwin held a hearing to consider what MDL attorneys will be appointed to serve as lead counsel for the plaintiffs in the consolidated transvaginal mesh litigation. Attiorneys from around the country comprise the Executive Committee and fifty firms comprise the PSC.
That is why it is extremely important for you to hire an end of the line lawyer so that your casr is not moved from a local law firm to a larger law firm to the MDL lead counsel. Many lead counsels are just end of the libne lawyers and are not taking cases, others are. Your attorney must be familiar with the MDL process. for the Vaginal mesh Helpline dial 1 877 522-2123