Reglan Lawsuits Will Proceed Without Consolidation
A growing number of Reglan lawsuits have been filed or are being investigated throughout the United States following the addition of a “black box” warning earlier this year about the increased risk of tardive dyskinesia with Reglan (Metoclopramide). However, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has determined that it is not necessary to consolidate the cases in a manner similar to how a Reglan class action lawsuit would be handled for pretrial litigation, and the cases will proceed individually in various through the court system.
The various manufacturers of generic metoclopramide, which is still more commonly known by its brand name “Reglan”, have come under increasing fire recently as a result of their failure to warn that using the gastrointestinal drug for more than 12 weeks substantially increases the risk that users will suffer from tardive dyskinesia, a neurological disorder that causes involuntary and repetitive movements of the lower face and limbs.
The first Reglan lawsuit involving tardive dyskinesia was filed more than 20 years ago, and more than 70 cases have been filed in state and federal courts throughout the United States since then.
Last month, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation considered a petition to centralize and consolidate 11 currently pending Reglan tardive dyskinesia lawsuits before one judge for pretrial litigation to avoid duplicate discovery, inconsistent rulings and serve the convenience of the parties, attorneys and witnesses. However, in an order issued June 3, 2009, the MDL panel denied the transfer request, stating:
On the basis of the papers filed and hearing session held, we are not persuaded that Section 1407 centralization would serve the convenience of the parties and witnesses or further the just and efficient conduct of this litigation at the present time. The eleven actions at issue do share factual issues as to whether the drug metoclopramide causes neurological injuries (principally, tardive dyskinesia). But there is no single common defendant, and some entities, such as Baxter Healthcare Corp., are named in only one or two actions. Moreover, several of the actions appear to be substantially advanced (five were commenced in either 2006 or 2007). Metoclopramide litigation has a lengthy history, and the record indicates that a significant amount of the common discovery has already taken place. The proponents of centralization have failed to convince us that any remaining common questions of fact among these actions are sufficiently complex and/or numerous to justify Section 1407 transfer at this time. Alternatives to transfer exist that may minimize whatever possibilities there might be of duplicative discovery and/or inconsistent pretrial rulings.
REGLAN LAWYERS FOR TARDIVE DYSKINESIA LAWSUITS
This ruling does not impact potential claimants’ ability to pursue compensation against the manufacturers of metoclopramide drugs for failing to warn about the serious and debilitating Reglan side effects. Potential cases are still being reviewed by our Reglan lawyers and individual lawsuits will proceed in various courts throughout the United States.
If you, a friend or family member have been diagnosed with tardive dyskinesia or another neurological disorder after taking Reglan, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.