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South Carolina is a lovely state with mostly lovely weather, though this time of year its appearance on the map looks like the country’s jutted chin daring a hurricane to sock it. South Carolina courts have been known to sock it to defendants, particularly in asbestos cases.    

Luckily, asbestos has nothing to do with today’s

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If we have said it once, we have said it a hundred times:  medical product manufacturers are not insurers of their products.  Almost as frequently uttered would be that strict liability is not the same thing as absolute liability.  In the show position might be that the temporal relationship between a new medical condition and

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We are just back from a lovely long weekend in Mexico.   We were delighted to find, on our DVR, a show we’d forgotten we set to record:  a special interviewing the cast and director of Love, Actually on the 20th anniversary of that film’s release.  This is our all-time favorite holiday film, and pretty close to our favorite film of any genre.  We love how it has crept into popular culture (the SNL parody of the flip cards scene, featuring Kate McKinnon as Hillary Clinton is nothing short of brilliant), and we find the film endlessly charming and restorative, no matter how many times we watch it.   Take a look at the special, if you missed it

Speaking of all-time favorites, today’s case deals with warnings causation, our all-time favorite doctrine.  (Along with our co-blogger, Mr. McConnell, we just presented a CLE on this topic.)  This is the doctrine:  to prevail on a failure-to-warn claim in a prescription drug or medical device case, a plaintiff must prove both that the products warnings were inadequate and that the inadequate warning proximately caused the plaintiff’s injuries. Subject to variations of local law, the general rule is that, to prove the warnings causation piece, a plaintiff must adduce evidence that a different or stronger warning would have altered her physician’s decision to prescribe the drug or device. 

In Brennan v. Johnson & Johnson, et al., 2022 WL 17219513 (C.D. Cal. Nov. 18, 2022), the plaintiff alleged that the warnings provided with her pelvic mesh devices were inadequate.  She asserted failure-to-warn claims sounding in negligence and strict liability, and the defendant moved to dismiss both, arguing that the plaintiff could not prove that any inadequacy of the warnings proximately caused her injuries because her prescribing physician had not testified that she would have acted differently in the face of a different warning. Continue Reading Lovely Warnings Causation (and More) Mesh Decision from the Central District of California

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The defendants in Mixson v. C.R. Bard, Inc., ___ F. Supp.3d ___, (N.D. Fla. Sept. 16, 2022) (“Mixson I”), and Mixson v. C.R. Bard, Inc., 2022 WL 7581737 (N.D. Fla. Sept. 23, 2022) (“Mixson II”), by no means won everything, but what they won was more important than what they didn’t, so we’re OK with the results.Continue Reading Mixson Somewhat Mixed, But We’ll Take It

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California state court is not the place most products liability defendants want to end up.  Unfortunately, today’s case had to stay in state court because plaintiff sued the defendant’s device representatives who had direct contact with the plaintiff.  The reps, like plaintiff, were California residents and destroyed diversity jurisdiction. The decision, however, in James v.

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For a decision that affirmed not just a verdict, but an award of punitive damages, against a device manufacturer, Nicholson v. Biomet, Inc., 46 F.4th 757 (8th Cir. 2022), is not as bad as it could have been.  That’s because most of the decision was about evidentiary rulings that the court found to be “harmless” error, and one might even have some benefit for our clients in the long run.

Still, Nicholson was pretty darn depressing.Continue Reading Nicholson – Not So Harmless