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Product Liability: 2015 Year in Review

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| Legal Update

Massachusetts state and federal courts issued a number of important product liability decisions in 2015. The Product Liability and Toxic Tort Litigation Group at Nutter recently reviewed these cases. Highlighted below are some of the key cases and issues decided in the past year.

Reckis v. Johnson & Johnson, 471 Mass. 272 (April 17, 2015): Interpreting Wyeth v. Levine to hold rejection of a Citizen's Petition to change an FDA-approved warning label was not "clear evidence" that the FDA had in fact rejected a warning about potentially life-threatening diseases. (Botsford, J.)

In re Celexa and Lexapro Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation, 779 F.3d 34 (1st Cir. Feb. 20, 2015): Interpreting PLIVA, Inc. v. Mensing to hold impossibility preemption extends to brand name drugs when a proposed label change is not based on new information. (Kayatta, J.)

Hochendoner et al. v. Genzyme Corp., 95 F.Supp.3d 15 (D. Mass. March 25, 2015): Interpreting federal research funding law to confer no private right of action and holding that no duty exists under state law requiring pharmaceutical manufacturers to supply a scarce drug to all eligible patients. (Woodlock, J.)

Rosbeck v. Corin Group, PLC, 2015 WL 6472249 (D. Mass. Oct. 27, 2015): A cause of action can exist under Massachusetts state law against a hospital for distribution of an allegedly defective medical device, thus preventing removal to federal court. (Sorokin, J.)

Dwyer v. Boston Scientific Corp., 2015 WL 3384894 (Mass. Sup. Ct. April 2, 2015).: Interpreting Riegel v. Medtronic to hold allegations that defendant violated general, non-specific Current Good Manufacturing Practices in manufacturing a PMA-approved medical device were sufficient "parallel claims" to avoid federal preemption. (Miller, J.)

For a more comprehensive analysis of the decisions discussed above, please click here.

Nutter's Product Liability: 2015 Year in Review is a publication of the Product Liability and Toxic Tort Litigation Group of Nutter McClennen & Fish LLP in Boston. For further information or if we can be of assistance, please contact your Nutter product liability lawyer or the chairperson of the Product Liability and Toxic Tort Litigation Group:

David L. Ferrera
Chair, Product Liability and Toxic Tort Litigation Group

Nutter is a top-tier, Boston-based law firm providing high-level legal counsel to clients who range from well-established companies and institutions to early stage entrepreneurs to foundations and families. The firm's lawyers are well-known for their extensive experience in business and finance, intellectual property, litigation, real estate and land use, labor and employment, tax, and trusts and estates. For decades, one of the backbones of Nutter's civil litigation practice has been product liability defense. Our attorneys have years of real-world experience defending companies through trial and appeal in all types of product liability litigation, with a particular emphasis in the areas of drug and medical device claims and toxic torts. Our firm commitment to building a culture and atmosphere of excellence has led to Nutter earning a "Tier 1" ranking in Boston in the U.S. News & World Report "Best Law Firms" edition for Product Liability Defense.

This advisory is for information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any specific facts or circumstances. Under the rules of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, this material may be considered as advertising.

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