Behrens Details Study on Forum Shopping in California Pharmaceutical Cases

Shook, Hardy & Bacon Public Policy Group Co-Chair Mark Behrens has authored an article describing a study conducted by the Civil Justice Association of California finding that "nonresident plaintiffs—'litigation tourists'—are filing pharmaceutical cases in California by the thousands, dwarfing the number of filings by people who reside in the state."

The researchers reportedly found that of the 25,503 plaintiffs in pharmaceutical cases filed in California, 90 percent were not residents of the state. "Since roughly 12% of Americans live in California, that means the percentage of in-state plaintiffs in the lawsuits studied is lower than the state's percentage of the national population," Behrens notes.

The study "provides an essential starting point for further discussions regarding the impact of nonresident filings in pharmaceutical and other mass-tort cases in California—including over how the flow of out-of-state cases to California may also contribute to the state judiciary’s budget crisis and impede access to justice for California’s own residents," Behrens concludes.