Defective Medical Device Lawsuits: Important 9th Circuit Ruling Helps Victims of Defective Medical Devices, Bernstein Liebhard LLP Reports

New York, New York (PRWEB) January 18, 2013

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that a plaintiff allegedly left paralyzed by Medtronic Inc.s SynchroMed EL pain pump may pursue a state-law defective medical device lawsuit against the company, Bernstein Liebhard LLP reports. In a unanimous en banc decision issued on January 10th, the Court reversed an earlier ruling by a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit which found that federal law pre-empted the claims. Bernstein Liebhard LLP believes this decision could have nationwide implications, and pave the way for plaintiffs to obtain compensation for their injuries in lawsuits which might otherwise have been dismissed. (Stengel v. Medtronic Inc, 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, No. 10-17755)

Recent Supreme Court decisions have left many victims of defective medical devices without legal recourse. This new decision from the 9th Circuit could provide these plaintiffs with a way forward, says Bernstein Liebhard LLP, a nationwide law firm representing the victims of defective drugs and medical devices. The firm is currently offering free case evaluations to victims of medical device injuries, including those allegedly caused by metal-on-metal hip implants, the da Vinci Surgery Robot, and the Mirena IUD.

Defective Medical Device Lawsuits

The plaintiff in the Medtronic lawsuit alleged the company contributed to his injuries by failing to report information to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in violation of federal law. Among other things, the complaint cited a warning letter that the agency sent to Medtronic in 2007 that stated Medtronic had concealed known risks. In April 2012 a 9th Circuit Court upheld a lower court’s decision to dismiss the case on grounds that they were preempted by federal law. However, this past July, the 9th Circuit granted en banc rehearing of the case, and it was brought before the entire Court.

According to a report from Reuters, the 9th Circuit considered the U.S. Supreme Courts 2008 ruling in Riegel v. Medtronic, which barred claims under state laws that are more stringent than federal requirements. It also mentioned Buckman v. Plaintiffs’ Legal Committee, which found that state-law claims that a company misled federal regulators during the approval process interfered with the FDA’s duty to police fraud. The Court found neither decision prevented the Plaintiff from bringing his negligence claim against Medtronic.

Two other courts the 5th and 7th Circuits have also allowed similar claims to go forward, according to Reuters. Bernstein Liebhard LLP believes that these decisions, together with the 9th Circuit ruling, may pave the way for similar findings in other federal jurisdictions.

Victims of defective medical devices may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and other damages. Bernstein Liebhard LLP offers free legal consultations to individuals injured as a result of defective medical devices, including those allegedly caused by metal-on-metal hip implants, the da Vinci Surgery Robot, and the Mirena IUD. To learn more about medical device lawsuits, please visit Bernstein Liebhard LLPs website, For additional information, contact a lawyer at Bernstein Liebhard LLP today at (877) 779-1414.


About Bernstein Liebhard LLP

Bernstein Liebhard LLP is a New York-based law firm exclusively representing injured persons in complex individual and class action lawsuits nationwide since 1993, including those who have been harmed by dangerous drugs, defective medical devices and consumer products. The firm has been named by The National Law Journal to the Plaintiffs Hot List, recognizing the top plaintiffs firms in the country, for the past 10 consecutive years.

Bernstein Liebhard LLP

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(877) 779-1414


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