The following excerpt is from Corporate Disputes' mini-roundtable with Partners Chris Gramling, Jennifer Hill, Stephanie McGraw and Ben Walther. A PDF of the full article is available below.
Corporate Disputes: Could you provide an overview of the key trends impacting drug and medical device manufacturers and sellers? How routinely do these companies find themselves a target for litigation?
Chris Gramling: Pharmaceutical and medical device companies are regularly targets for litigation and enforcement actions. In addition to constant product liability litigation, such companies often face antitrust, shareholder and class action litigation. Congress, plaintiffs' lawyers and state attorneys general have also closely scrutinised pricing practices, most notably in the pharmaceutical industry. Other key trends include concerted efforts to expand and distort the public nuisance doctrine, ongoing generation of multi-district litigations (MDLs) and mass torts by plaintiffs' lawyers, including in the non-prescription consumer goods space and the filing of no-injury class action litigation. In the MDL and mass tort settings, there is an increased recognition of the need for early assessment of cases as years of experience have revealed that very high percentages of cases filed in such litigations suffer from significant defects, such as no evidence of product use or exposure, as well as no injury.