This past Thursday, in a victory for individuals suffering from defective hip implants, a jury in Dallas, Texas, awarded six individuals over $1 billion, payable by the Johnson & Johnson company and the DePuy Orthopaedics group. According to the court documents and the testimony from the plaintiffs, the hip implants, which featured a “state-of-the-art” metal-on-metal design, were poorly constructed and lead directly to severe injury and bodily harm such as bone erosion and tissue death. Furthermore, it was stated that the metal-on-metal DePuy hips were marketed as a superior alternative to traditional hip replacement materials such as ceramic and plastic. The Johnson & Johnson company sold the Deputy hips with an advirtising campaign that claimed the new design would allow the replacements to remain functional for a longer period of time than allowed by the more established methods.
While both Johnson & Johnson refused to accept responsibility for the scenarios that lead to the six plaintiffs complaints, the courts found differently. The initial judgement brought down by the court is broken up in two ways: out of a $1.041 billion verdict, $32 million goes towards the damages experienced by the plaintiffs and the rest is simply to punish the companies for their poor decisions and deviousness.
This lawsuit is just one of over eight thousand such lawsuits leveled at the Johnson & Johnson company related to the faulty Pinnacle hip implants. In order to keep things as neat as possible, all of these cases have been moved to the federal court in Texas. At the moment, we are just at the beginning of the judicial process relating to DePuy hip replacements. Thursday’s verdict was only the third one to get handed down by the court, and by far the most compensatory (the second case resulted in a $500 million verdict, and the first actually resulted in Johnson & Johnson being completely freed from all responsibility towards the plaintiffs). In most instances, the initial cases will give people a fairly decent indicator of what the situation looks like for the other cases moving forward. Given that two out of three of the first DePuy cases to reach a conclusion of have resulted in highly positive results for the plaintiffs, it is likely that we will see many more verdicts favorable to DePuy hip replacement sufferers.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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