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January Pelvic Mesh Trial Set for New Jersey, Smith v. Ethicon

nj courtsMesh Medical Device News Desk, July 21, 2016 ~ It’s been a very long time since there was a pelvic mesh product liability trial in New Jersey.

The first case was Linda Gross v Ethicon held February 2013, which resulted in an $11.1 million verdict for Ms. Gross which is still on appeal, though near the end of the process.

After Wednesday’s Case Management conference, now another trial has been set for January 9, 2017 in the Superior Court of New Jersey Law Division, Bergen County, New Jersey. This is a state court where trials are conducted.

Trial court Bergen Co, NJ

Trial court Bergen Co, NJ

Smith v Ethicon is set for that date. Ms. Smith was implanted with a TVT-O and the case is still in the discovery stage. Case No. 16720-14. 

Bard trials, though not scheduled should begin to be set for early 2017, according to the Case Management Order.  At the same time it’s reported that Bard continues to make settlement progress in the New Jersey multidistrict litigation MDL.

tvt-oA trial is tentatively set for March 20, 2017 in the Cook, Nelson or Sheppard lawsuits filed against Ethicon for its TVT Secur pelvic mesh.

The next date for Case Management is August 24, 2016.

Judges Rachelle L. Harz  is overseeing Ethicon/ J&J and Judge James J. DeLuca is overseeing the CR Bard litigation.

There are 1,024 Bard cases filed in this jurisdiction and 8,887 cases filed naming Ethicon.

Here is the Gynecare Counsel list.

Here is the Bard Counsel list.  

See the New Jersey Pelvic Mesh Home page here:
http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/mass-tort/pelvicmesh/index.html

April 12, 2016 Case Management Order #27 talks about other cases being readied for trial.  #

34 Comments

  1. Betty S says:

    How are the cases chosen to go to trial and others like mine just sitting to be settled?

    • Jane Akre says:

      Not exactly sure Betty except that a grouping of names is sometimes randomly selected, some are defense picks some are plaintiff picks. Sometimes a plaintiff has to try a defense pick but as you know, going to trial can have any outcome, no matter whose pick.

      • Betty S says:

        Are the patients that had TOT, anterior mesh for cystocele and posterior mesh for rectocele still going to court or settling?

        • Jane Akre says:

          Betty– Please dont use your last name here. Thanks. As far as I know ( not a doc not a lawyer) they are not grouped that way…. it depends on your law firm and what it is doing with its cases. Some are settling, some are fighting…..You need to ask which they are.

  2. deborah d says:

    has any case been settled?

    • Jane Akre says:

      You may recall the christine scott case against Bard WAS settled…. use the SEarchbar to look it up. The Linda Gross case is close to being settled $11.1 million. there have also been quiet settlements on the eve of trial or just before trial….. or some law firms have settled their less injured cases for lesser amounts is what I”m told. Please do not print your last name… thank you

  3. Jimmy says:

    So why arent more of these going back to states

  4. Betty Ti says:

    Just like to keep up with the mesh cases & which cases that are coming up to be heard

  5. Toni says:

    Jane so mine is in New Jersey but is a MDL and I live in a different state. I am just curious how so many are in WV yet a small group in NJ ? Less than 10 K is inevitably a small group compared to WV . Was it law firm choice or overflow from WV? Not sure if it’s a good thing or bad thing because it seems like NJ has tried so few cases. Any one else know the answers?

    • Jane Akre says:

      The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation formed the MDL in West Virginia in January 2012. At the time, there were a couple thousand cases… today we are at 94,000 amassed in the one court… At the same time, another MDL formed in the parent state of J&J, that is New Jersey. There are a few states where many cases are amassed, Mass is one and California is another…. None as many as the MDL in Charleston. Your lawyer may have a better explanation…..

  6. anne says:

    I am on the New Jersey case list, is that consider MDL or Mass Tort?

  7. KB says:

    I was notified back in January that I was part of the Ethicon wave 2 trials. I was in the process of scheduling my
    deposition when my attorneys office called and stated they wouldn’t be scheduling right now due to some
    order the judge signed. I haven’t heard a word and when I called last month they wanted to schedule a phone call with an attorney to tell me what was going on. I declined the phone call because I didn’t want to be charged an absurd amount for a 5 minute phone call. Had this happened to anyone else in the wave 2 trials.

  8. k says:

    The MDL has been worthless! Most MDL trials settle right before so the value of the case is unknown. J&J is laughing.

  9. k says:

    Most attorney’s don’t update or call back their clients. We are being victimized all over again.

  10. Dog mom says:

    I just received my settlement offer in
    the mail for my Ethicon lawsuit…..
    they make the number look good
    until you realize just how much you
    will really get. Has anyone else received theirs? What are your thoughts?
    I’m not sure what to do.

  11. Toni says:

    Settlement from ethicon ? That is Johnson and Johnson . I have ethicon and haven’t heard any settlement in mail or a word from my attorney ? How is it they pick and choose who they want to offer settlement? I have had 3 surgeries last one to remove 85% and still need reconstruction and live with pain and infection . Lost my career over missing work . No insurance selling my home of 21 yrs. I am on my own with this nightmare . There will never be a settlement large enough to justify what I and way to many women are going through.. we have lost our womanhood. Maybe if they castraighted these greedy company heads they may begin to see the pain they have caused us. Total lose of body functions and embarrassment that goes with it. There will never be justice for us no matter the outcome.

    • Jane Akre says:

      Some are receiving settlement offers from J&J however some women are choosing to reject the offer.

      • Still Standing says:

        Toni, Law firms negotiate settlements for their clients only. So your legal representatives have probably not reached agreement yet. I assume the amounts will be similar among law firms, but that depends on the strengh of your law firms bargaining power. You can see what law firms are settling cases by going to your MDL and seeing what law firms are named in the orders that set up the settlement agreement and appointment of special council.

  12. deborah d says:

    one of the attorney’s told me ,yes some of the monies you get, will pay medicare for seeing a doctor, what?? shouldn’t J&
    j pay them?

    • Jane Akre says:

      Everything is negotiable.

      • The settlement team is required to withhold 25% of your gross settlement to pay private insurance, medicare, medicaid, and other entities that payed for services related to your mesh damages. They usually negotiate the amount down, but that depends on many things. For example, if Medicare paid for a surgery or hospital stay or other treatment, they will want to recoup part of those dollars they paid out. In other words, they have the first shot at your settlement dollars. Well, a actually the second shot. Your attorney will take whatever % you agreed to from your gross amount. If you get $100 k, attorney will take say 40%, so $40,000. They will also withhold the 25% to pay claims, or 25,000. Then your case costs are figured. This comes out of YOUR part of the money, not the attorney. Say case costs are $5000 (which would be a low ball estimate because you have to pay into the MDL fund. So, with that equation, your would get a check for $30,000, then recover what part of the 25% remains after reimbursing your liens. Sounds complicated and IS complicated.

        • Jane Akre says:

          So if you are lucky, you make the same as your attorney!?? What doesn’t make sense is the MDL process was supposed to streamline litigation and make it easier/ swifter to get through the courts…. Not only has it not been swiftly resolved, but the attorneys are taking the full amount as if they had worked up cases for trial, when they may NOT have. AND they get to share in common benefits dollars set aside from your settlements. What’s wrong with this picture? Is this the way it’s supposed to work?

          • Hello no, its not the way it is supposed to work. But, actually getting “selected” to get worked up for trial is not always advantageous. It adds a tremendous cost to what you have to pay for case costs that are in addition to the attorney flat % they get from the gross award amount. My case costs were more than $85,000. So, actually, yes, sometimes the firm recoups actually more than the plaintiff. Crazy system

  13. mudd says:

    everyone should get 10 million and call it a day

  14. Anonymous says:

    All of this talk of MDL is confusing. Isn’t it the same as bellweather? I am J&J ethicon gynecare on the NJ case list. I wanted everyone to see this in case it was missed.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-04-06/j-j-s-vaginal-mesh-costs-may-rise-if-5-million-deal-is-a-guide

    Also, I am looking for local NC support groups for TVT mesh.

    • Jane Akre says:

      MDL is multidistrict litigation. That is a massing of cases with a similar injury such as pelvic or transvaginal mesh. It was found to be easier to run them with the same judge to avoid lower court conflicted rulings. A bellwether is supposed to test legal theories and provide some indication of the worth of a case….. That does not mean a company HAS to settle, but if they see the writing on the wall, they might want to settle… is my understanding.

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