Lipitor Lawsuits Consolidated to South Carolina, ClassAction.org Reports
The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation approved a motion to centralize all federally-filed lawsuits involving Lipitor, which allege that the cholesterol-lowering drug caused patients to develop type 2 diabetes, ClassAction.org reports.
On February 18, 2014, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) granted plaintiffs’ requests to form a multidistrict litigation (MDL) for all federally-filed lawsuits alleging that Lipitor increased patients’ risks for developing type 2 diabetes.
Previously, the JPML denied the plaintiffs’ motion to consolidate the cases. In July 2013, the JPML said that the five federal lawsuits involving Lipitor did not warrant centralization because most of the cases were pending in the same district court. Furthermore, the panel said that the maker of Lipitor, Pfizer Inc., was willing to assist in pre-trial proceedings for cases pending outside of that district. In the February 2014 ruling, the panel noted that “upon reevaluation, we find that a number of factors now tip the balance in favor of centralization.”
First, the panel said that there had been a significant increase in the number of lawsuits filed and plaintiffs involved. At the time of consolidation, 56 lawsuits were filed in federal courts across the country, and that number has since grown to nearly 70 pending cases. Second, the panel noted that it was not persuaded by Pfizer’s arguments against consolidation. According to Pfizer, the formation of an MDL would cause an “avalanche” of lawsuits filed by patients who already had diabetes prior to using Lipitor, ultimately forcing the company into a settlement; however, the JPML noted that, if that were the case, centralization would still benefit Pfizer.
With nearly 70 Lipitor cases now pending in federal court, the attorneys working with ClassAction.org would like you to know that there is still time to join this growing litigation. If you or someone you know was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes after using Lipitor, visit http://www.classaction.org/lipitor-lawsuits today for more information.
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