Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and DePuy Orthopedics were dealt a huge blow earlier this week when a Texas judge refused to grant the companies an expedited appeal for the multimillion-dollar Pinnacle hip implant verdict from this past May.
Pinnacle Hip Implant Trials
The May verdict awarded a whopping $502 million to six plaintiffs who suffered from the companies’ defective hip implants. Approximately a month later, the award was reduced to $141 million in accordance with Texas damage cap laws.
Although the original award was reduced, J&J and DePuy are facing an additional 8,400 lawsuits in the Pinnacle hip implant multidistrict litigation, which could make these payouts extremely costly for the companies.
The next Pinnacle hip implant trials are scheduled to begin in September, and the companies were worried they would have to go to trial before their appeal over the May verdict would be heard in court. This led them to file for an expedited appeal shortly after the reduced verdict.
J&J and DePuy also asked for a retrial on the grounds that plaintiffs’ attorneys presented irrelevant and unfair evidence during the trial, but this was very quickly denied.
It appears the companies’ worst fears are coming true. J&J and DePuy could be facing another multimillion-dollar verdict after the September metal hip implant trial.
J&J and DePuy are likely experiencing déjà vu. In 2013, the companies agreed to pay a massive $2.5 billion to settle more than 7,000 lawsuits over another model of hip implants, the ASR. If the companies are unable to win the bellwether trials, they could easily be looking at a several billion-dollar settlement.
If this wasn’t enough to worry J&J, the company also faces a massive amount of lawsuits over the talc in its baby powder products. There are currently more than 1,000 lawsuits on file in multidistrict litigation, but it is reported there are more than 12,000 cases currently being investigated. The next baby powder trial will also take place this September.