Articles Posted in Products Liability

Bahe Cook Cantley & Nefzger is currently offering free case evaluations to men who may have suffered cardiac problems due to their use of testosterone therapy medications, such as AndroGel.

More than 2,200 cases have been filed on behalf of men who have suffered heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular complications after using testosterone replacement medications.  These cases are currently pending in a Multi-District litigation in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against both manufacturers and distributors of the Low-T drugs.  The lawsuits allege strict liability for design defects and failure to properly warn consumers, as well as negligence, breach of warranty, fraud, and unjust enrichment, among other things.

On March 3, 2015 the U.S. Food & Drug Administration ordered manufacturers of prescription Low-Testosterone medications to modify their labeling practices in two ways.  First, the labels must include a warning of the association between using testosterone replacement therapy and an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.  Second, the labels must clearly state that the drugs have not been proven safe or effective for treating low testosterone levels in aging men.

Men who allegedly suffered heart attacks, strokes, deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism or other serious cardiovascular events after using low testosterone replacement drugs may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages and other damages related to their injuries.

Some of the more popular testosterone therapy medications include Androgel®, Androderm®, Fortesta®, Axiron®, Testim®, Delatestryl®, Depo-Testosterone®, Striant®, Testopel®, and others.  If you or someone you know are using any of these drugs, take caution.  It is also important to be wary of the generic versions of these products.

Our firm is currently investigating and accepting these cases.

With the Takata airbag recall continuing to grow, it is by far the largest auto recall in U.S. history. This not only means that millions of Americans are being affected, but millions are also living in fear that their vehicles may be equipped with the explosive airbags.

That fear may soon come to an end. SafeCar has announced that all vehicle identification numbers (VINs) affected by the recall are now loaded into a Lookup Tool on their website, SafeCar.gov.

Not only is this tool free to the public, but it also produces results within seconds and will inform consumers about all open recalls on their vehicle. SafeCar has also created a video which explains what to expect if your car is recalled and what you should do next.

Hopefully this new tool is instrumental in cutting down on the number of injuries and deaths that have resulted from the exploding Takata airbags, which have been plaguing vehicles in this country for years.

In October 2014, the first class-action lawsuit was filed against Takata Corporation, which alleged that Takata knowingly manufactured and continued to manufacture defective air bags for over a decade. Not only has the number of lawsuits continued to grow, the company could potentially face many more for their negligent manufacturing and the injuries it has caused.

Bahe Cook Cantley & Nefzger is currently reviewing and accepting cases of people injured by these defective airbags on a nationwide basis.

http://www.safecar.gov

Weeks after a congressional House subcommittee held a hearing over the defective airbags produced by Takata Corporation, Honda has added 1 million more vehicles to a growing recall list. This recall is already the largest auto recall in history, and the number of vehicles affected has continued to grow.

Two weeks ago Honda had announced that it would recall about 350,000 Hondas in high humidity states. On Monday, the company announced that it would be expanding the recall to encompass the entire nation after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration demanded it do so. This will add over a million 2001-2005 Civics and 2003-2007 Accords to the recall.

Last week Honda confirmed that Kylan Langlinais, a Louisiana woman, was the 7th person killed by a defective Takata airbag. Langlinais died at a hospital just 4 days after the 2005 Accord she was driving crashed into a utility pole.

While ensuring the safety of drivers still with defective airbags has been the primary focus of the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, civil penalties are not out of the question. Langlinais’ family has filed a lawsuit for her death. Takata could potentially be liable under a products liability theory for placing a defective product into the hands of its consumers, which has caused, and has continued to cause, countless injuries and several deaths.

Bahe Cook Cantley & Nefzger is currently reviewing and accepting cases of people injured by these defective airbags on a nationwide basis.

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A congressional House Commerce and Energy subcommittee held a hearing on defective airbags produced by the Japanese company, Takata Corporation, whose airbags have been known to explode and fire out shards of metal when they inflate. This has been the biggest auto recall in U.S. history. So far, nearly 34 million air bags have been recalled, which has not been enough to prevent countless injuries and at least 6 deaths.

Kevin Kennedy, the executive vice president of North America Takata expressed deep regret and said they were doing everything in their power to address the safety concerns raised by airbag ruptures. Kennedy noted that Takata had upped production of replacement airbags and expected to produce 1 million per month by September. However, Kennedy admitted to still using ammonium nitrate even though the company has acknowledged that it may be a factor in the defective airbags. Furthermore, the logistics of replacing the defective equipment has yet to be worked out. In order to figure out a strategy, Takata will be working with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Even with production increases, the confusion and fear amongst consumers is palpable. One in seven registered vehicles in the U.S. has been effected by the recall. Automakers are left trying to figure out which cars are affected by the expanded recall, and for some consumers who know they have defective parts, supply has not caught up with demand.

As for penalties Takata might face, the NHTSA is currently focusing on ensuring the safety of drivers still with defective airbags, but didn’t rule out civil penalties as the investigation continues. If civil penalties are pursued, Takata would be liable under a products liability theory for placing a defective product into the hands of its consumers.

Bahe Cook Cantley & Nefzger is currently reviewing and accepting cases of people injured by these defective airbags on a nationwide basis.

Transvaginal mesh is an implant typically manufactured with a plastic material called polypropylene.  The product was created to repair conditions such as pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence.  The mesh was used fairly commonly to treat women over the past two decades until several products were recalled in the summer of 2011.

Last month Federal District Judge Goodwin was tasked with a legally complex analysis regarding the applicability of punitive damages in the case against Boston Scientific.  While civil litigation is not typically fashioned to impose a penalty on defendants, under limited circumstances a civil defendant may be forced to pay punitive damages above and beyond the compensatory damages calculated to make the plaintiff whole.   These damages are often imposed when defendants had express, direct knowledge that their misconduct could cause injury, and continued the acts nonetheless.

In denying the Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment on the issue, Judge Goodwin concluded that a reasonable jury could find Boston Scientific acted with reckless and/or conscious disregard of the health and safety of its consumers, and therefore, summary judgment was inappropriate.   Judge Goodwin also concluded that a reasonable jury could find that the Defendant knew its product would probably cause injury to another person, and placed it in the stream of commerce anyway.

Just this week Boston Scientific Corporation, one of the pharmaceutical manufacturers of the propylene mesh product, disclosed in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that it has agreed to settle nearly 3,000 cases and claims of women who were injured by the company’s mesh products for $119 million dollars.  A couple notable jury verdicts against Boston Scientific have resulted in $18.5 million and $26.7 million awards for plaintiffs.

Boston Scientific still faces more than 22,000 transvaginal mesh claims nationwide.   There are now more than 70,000 claims against pharmaceutical manufacturers for transvaginal mesh products.   A final number of around 100,000 claims are expected.   Bahe Cook Cantley & Nefzger is currently reviewing and accepting these cases on behalf of women injured by transvaginal mesh on a nationwide basis.

A trial in South Georgia concerning the death of a four year old boy is renewing debate over Jeep safety. Remington Walden died in the backseat of his family’s 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee when the car erupted in flames after being rear-ended at an intersection. The family’s lawyers allege that the carmaker has long been aware of the fatal defects that caused the child’s tragic and painful death, including the fuel tank placement just 11 inches from the rear bumper.

BCCN reported in October of 2009 that the Jeep Grand Cherokee fuel tank was 400% more likely to cause a fire and endanger or kill the vehicle’s occupants than other SUVs.  The Center for Auto Safety had at the time asked the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to recall all such cars made between 1993-2004, asserting that data showed that these cars were 4 times more likely to result in a fatal fire during a crash than other sport utility vehicles. The government currently links at least 70 deaths to these vehicles’ defects.

Fiat Chrysler recalled more than 1.5 million vehicles, including all 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty models as well as the ones suggested years earlier by the Center, under government pressure in June 2013. The company continues to insist that the vehicles met safety requirements at the time they were built, and that they were not defective. Sergio Marchionne, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO, stated in a deposition that the company believes that the cars are no more susceptible to fire than other SUVs.

BCCN is currently reviewing and accepting defective Jeep and SUV cases resulting in a fuel tank explosion on a nationwide basis.

A former engineer with Takata, the company now embroiled in a recall impacting major car manufacturers including Nissan, Honda, Ford, BMW, and more, has come forward to offer whistle-blowing testimony to the United States Congress regarding the company’s fatal and negligent practices.

Mark Lillie claims that the company had been warned that the ammonium nitrate they used in their designs was unstable and would result in catastrophic failure. Takata has been criticized for continuing to use the chemical compound in replacement designs. In addition, Lillie has said that airbag inflator plants were not up to standard and were unable to properly manage the ammonium nitrate-based airbag inflator design, lacking the expertise needed to create safe products.

More than 24 million cars have been recalled in the wake of the growing number of fatalities associated with the airbags.

 

Complete list of affected vehicles:

Acura: 2002–2003 TL; 2002 CL; 2003–2006 MDX

BMW: 2000–2005 3-series sedan and wagon; 2000–2006 3-series coupe and convertible; 2001–2006 M3 coupe and convertible

Chrysler: 2004–2008 Chrysler 300; 2007–2008 Aspen

Dodge/Ram: 2003–2008 Dodge Ram 1500; 2004–2008 Ram 2500, Dakota, and Durango; 2004–2007 Charger; 2004–2008 Ram 3500 and 4500; 2008 Ram 5500

Ford: 2004–2005 Ranger; 2005–2006 GT; 2005–2008 Mustang

Honda: 2001–2007 Accord (four-cylinder); 2001–2002 Accord (V-6); 2001–2005 Civic; 2002–2006 CR-V; 2002–2004 Odyssey; 2003–2011 Element; 2003–2007 Pilot; 2006 Ridgeline

Infiniti: 2001–2004 Infiniti I30/I35; 2002–2003 Infiniti QX4; 2003–2005 Infiniti FX35/FX45; 2006 Infiniti M35/M45

Lexus: 2002–2005 SC430

Mazda: 2004–2008 Mazda 6; 2006–2007 Mazdaspeed 6; 2004–2008 Mazda RX-8; 2004–2005 MPV; 2004 B-series

Mitsubishi: 2004–2005 Lancer; 2006–2007 Raider

Nissan: 2001–2003 Maxima; 2001–2004 Pathfinder; 2002–2006 Nissan Sentra

Pontiac: 2003–2005 Vibe

Saab: 2005 9-2X

Subaru: 2003–2005 Baja, Legacy, Outback; 2004–2005 Impreza, Impreza WRX, Impreza WRX STI

Toyota: 2002–2005 Toyota Corolla and Sequoia; 2003–2005 Matrix, Tundra

 

BCCN is part of a team of attorneys investigating claims against Takata, car manufacturers and dealerships. BCCN is currently reviewing and accepting cases on a nationwide basis.

Faulty air bags currently recalled by Takata are being blamed for the death of 35 year old Carlos Solis of Houston, TX. The airbags are reportedly responsible for at least five additional fatalities.

More than 20 million vehicles have been recalled due to the airbags; companies joining in the recall include Honda, BMW, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru, Ford, and Chrysler.

There is every indication that this recall has been inadequate to protect the millions of drivers who are at risk of death or injury due to this faulty equipment. BCCN is part of a team of attorneys investigating claims against Takata, car manufacturers and dealerships. BCCN is currently reviewing and accepting cases on a nationwide basis.

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Bahe Cook Cantley & Nefzger PLC partner Will Nefzger is handling cases involving Mavic R-Sys bicycle wheel failures.  The wheel spokes are made of carbon fiber composite.  Carbon fiber composite can and does fatigue over a relatively short period of time.  When the fatigue occurs, the spokes can and do fail.  When the spokes fail, the integrity of the entire wheel is compromised and results in its failure.  Obviously, a catastrophic wheel failure can lead to a crash and very serious injuries or death.
There are a couple of major problems with this.  First, Mavic does not warn its consumers that the spokes fatigue to the point of failure in a relatively short amount of time or give any instructions regarding changing the spokes after a certain amount of time due to fatigue.  Second, even though fatigued to the point of failure, the damage to the spokes often is undetectable.  Thus, a purchaser of the wheel has no notice of the potential problem and most likely will never be able to detect it on its own anyway.  Mavic markets and sells these wheels to casual riders, in addition to more serious riders and racers.
Will Nefzger is currently reviewing and accepting these cases from consumers that have been injured as a result of the failure of a Mavic R-Sys wheel.  He is accepting cases on a nationwide basis.

GM announced yesterday that nearly 3.4 million more vehicles will be recalled in light of its review of ignition switch issues following the first set of recalls affecting 2.6 million cars earlier this year. This move brings the total number of vehicles recalled by GM this year over 20 million.

GM admitted in February that its engineers first knew of the ignition switch issues as early as 2004, leading to an investigation into the nearly 11-year delay in recalling the faulty vehicles. Less than two weeks ago, GM announced its decision to dismiss 15 employees, and to discipline 5 additional employees, in wake of the three-month investigation by former federal prosecutor Anton Valuka. While Valuka’s report did not reveal a conspiracy by the corporation to cover up relevant facts over the 11 year delay, it did point to “a pattern of incompetence and neglect” throughout the company, especially in regards to the 20 employees the report found to be the most at fault.

At least thirteen deaths have been attributed to the faulty ignition switch, which can fall out of the “run” position while the vehicle is in operation, shutting down crucial safety features such as airbags. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has indicated that the number may, in fact, be much higher.

The company’s CEO, Mary Barra, has said that GM will voluntarily create a program to compensate those who have suffered injuries or death due to the defective cars, but she has not indicated how large that fund may be. According to GM president Dan Ammann, compensation expert Kenneth Feinberg will be in charge of determining who is eligible and to what extent. Feinberg will also be responsible for determining whether there have been more than 13 deaths caused by the defect.

GM is set to start accepting claims on August 1. Bahe, Cook, Cantley & Nefzger, PLC is currently seeking damages for a client who sustained injuries in a motor vehicle accident caused by the faulty ignition and air bag deployment. We are also currently reviewing and accepting more of these claims.