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Court Denies J&J Division’s Motion to Xarelto Lawsuit

Posted by on Sep 30, 2014 in Health | 1 comment

The first lawsuit filed against a division of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Janssen Ortho LLC for anti-coagulant drug Xarelto was shifted back from federal court to state court contrary to the motion of the drug distributor to keep the case in federal jurisdiction. The case was filed by Kentucky resident Virginia Stuntebeck who claimed that using the drug for her atrial fibrillation, for which the drug is primarily designed for, resulted in serious injuries. While this was the first case, it is anticipated that many more will be following.

Janssen’s motion was based on the fact that because its co-defendant Bayer Corp has yet to be served with the complaint, it was practical for the out-of-state distributor to want the case brought to federal court instead of in the state of Pennsylvania, where Bayer is located. Others believe that this move was an attempt to avoid being tried in Pennsylvania, where a recent Supreme Court decision (Lance vs Wyeth) upheld that a drug manufacturer can be held responsible for any injuries resulting from distributing a product that was too dangerous to be in the market in the first place.

This is the main contention of Stuntebeck, that Janssen and associated companies should not have sold Xarelto in the first place because they knew or should have known about the risks involved in using the product, which according to the website of Williams Kherkher specifically involves unstoppable bleeding. This constituted an act of negligence, for which the plaintiff is suing them for damages to compensate for her medical expenses and accompanying pain and suffering.

This recent decision by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is the first to raise the bar regarding the duty of care of pharmaceutical companies. In previous cases, as long as the drug company provided adequate warning regarding the risks involved in using a product, they may be able to avoid a claim of negligence. With the Pennsylvania decision, drug companies that push through with marketing a product that they knew presented excessive harm to patients can be held liable for any resulting injuries even if they warned them about it.

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  1. Engage Live

    I shared this with my friends.

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