The US Judicial Panel On Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) to Hear Motions On Consolidation
The United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML; “the Panel”) will soon be considering motions to consolidate in several important cases. The Panel released a Hearing Session Order stating that it will convene on September 30, 2021, in St. Louis to determine whether to transfer “any or all of the actions in those matters to any district or districts.”
The actions under consideration for consolidation include two litigation matters that have garnered national attention. One matter involves the recent recall of Philips CPAP and Bi-Level PAP and mechanical ventilators. The other is related to the recall of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) aerosol sunscreen products.
JPML Will Consider Consolidating Philips CPAP Lawsuits
MDL-No. 3014 involves recalled Philips CPAP, Bi-Level PAP, and mechanical ventilator machines. Philips recalled millions of these products, which are used to help people who suffer from sleep apnea and other breathing disorders, after learning that the devices posed health risks.
The motion to consolidate these product liability cases against Philips requested that the Panel review ten lawsuits that have been filed in five different districts. The motion filed by attorneys for Plaintiff, Thomas R. Starner, asks that the matters pending in the District of Massachusetts, Middle District of Georgia, Middle District of Florida, and the District of Delaware all be transferred to the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
The Panel will consider several things in making its determination. For example, do all of the CPAP lawsuits contain similar causes of action? Are the facts similar? Do they involve the same issues of law? What about the alleged injuries? Does it make sense to consolidate the lawsuits before one judge in one district to avoid duplicating efforts for discovery?
The Panel might also consider its expectation of how many additional lawsuits might be filed against Philips in the coming weeks and months. The recall of the CPAP, Bi-Level PAP and mechanical ventilators has affected consumers across the nation, leaving many with no alternative way to get the relief they need. It is not unreasonable to expect that more Philips CPAP lawsuits are on the horizon.
Philip Recalled CPAP, Bi-Level PAP, and Mechanical Ventilators Because of Health Risks
The recalled CPAP and other devices contain sound abatement foam called PE-PUR. Philips
learned that the foam is prone to degradation under certain circumstances.
Consumers who use these devices can inhale particles of foam as well as chemicals, leading to potentially dangerous consequences.
The recalled Philips CPAP, Bi-Level PAP, and mechanical ventilators reportedly can cause adverse short-term and long-term effects, including:
- Respiratory irritation
- Skin irritation
- Shortness of breath
- Airway inflammation
- Organ damage
The lawsuits allege that Philips should be liable for damages because their devices were defective and dangerous and did not come with warnings about the health risks of using them.
JPML Will Consider Consolidating Lawsuits Against J & J for Dangerous Sunscreen Products
On September 30, 2021, the JPML will also consider consolidating litigation filed recently against J & J after they recalled several aerosol sunscreens. The sunscreens were recalled because they contain benzene, a dangerous carcinogen.
The motion to consolidate (MDL-No. 3015) seeks to move eight recalled sunscreen lawsuits filed against J & J in various districts in Florida, New York, and California to the US District Court for the District of New Jersey.
As stated above, the Panel will consider whether the lawsuits contain similar facts, allegations, and causes of action and whether consolidation will prevent the unnecessary duplication of effort, time, and money.
J & J Recalled Sunscreen Because of Benzene Contamination
The lawsuits against J & J came after the company recalled several lines of its aerosol sunscreens, including some under the Neutrogena and Aveeno brands. Why?
Because of benzene, a known carcinogen.
J & J claims that benzene is not an ingredient in the sunscreens but is possibly a by-product of the manufacturing process.
Benzene is in crude oil and is a by-product of oil manufacturing. It is a chemical often used as a solvent and in the synthesis of making other chemicals.
Benzene is a known human carcinogen that increases the risk of developing blood cancer.
Exposure to benzene can have short-term and long-term effects, including:
- Irregular heartbeat
- Irregular menstrual cycles
The lawsuits under review for consolidation claim that J & J’s marketing and sales practices regarding these sunscreens were unlawful and misleading. The lawsuits also seek to hold J & J liable for selling defective and dangerous products.
Alonso Krangle, LLP is Reviewing Philips CPAP and J & J Sunscreen Lawsuits
Our lawyers at Alonso Krangle, LLP are currently reviewing claims for people who may have been injured by recalled Philips CPAP, Philips Bi-Level PAP, Philips mechanical ventilators, and recalled Johnson & Johnson sunscreens. If you used these products, you might be eligible to file a lawsuit against the makers of these defective and dangerous products.
Call Alonso Krangle, LLP today at 800-403-6191 for a free evaluation of your claim.