Fosamax lawsuits against Fosamax manufacturer Merck Pharmaceuticals regarding Fosamax-related femur fractures may be consolodated into an MDL, or Multi-District Litigation grouping, in which a single federal court oversees discovery between the defendant drug company and all the individual plaintiffs, but it won’t be without a fight as to the location.
On March 23, 2011, Merck moved the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate all federal Fosamax lawsuits into a single Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) proceeding in front of US District Judge Garrett Brown in the District of New Jersey. While many lawsuits are pending in that district, some plaintiffs oppose this location. As an alternative, Merck proposed that the MDL be heard by Judge Rebecca Doherty, in the Western District of Louisiana. The osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) MDL consolidated more than 900 plaintiffs’ cases in a New York federal court. The court excluded all bone fracture claims.
(Fosamax, a bisphonsphonate intended to strengthen bones, has also been linked with weakened bones, leading to severe bone breaks including femoral fractures, a serious heart condition called atrial fibrillation, and recently an increased risk of esophageal (throat) cancer. Patients suffering from these types of Fosamax-related injuries should consult with a Fosamax injury attorney soon to evaluate whether they have a Fosamax-related legal claim.)
A Multi-District Litigation is similar to a class action, in that it is a vehcile used to more efficiently process a number of claims. unlike a class action, though, the plaintiffs generally maintain their individual claims, rather than being represented by a small group of class representatives. Usually, issues like discovery–where the parties ask written questions, engage in depositions, and produce documents–are handled in a single process, rather than being reproduced all over the country in individual courts. This saves the parties time and money.
Have you or a loved one taken Fosamax? How did it affect you? Many patients have taken bisphosphates and had good results. Leave a comment below to share your story.