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Articles Tagged with injuries

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feet on sidewalkProperty owners and business operators owe certain duties to those who come onto their premises for a business or social purpose. A breach of this duty can potentially result in a finding of liability against the landowner and an award of damages in favor of an injured party. This is most commonly referred to as a “slip and fall” case, in which someone is injured because of property that isn’t maintained, such as a cracked sidewalk or other similar issue.

For this reason, it is increasingly common for would-be defendants to ask for a waiver of liability from those with whom they do business. It is up to the courts to determine whether such waivers are valid under the facts of an individual case.

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Pinnacle hip replacementA two-month trial in Dallas brought back a huge verdict against Johnson & Johnson, the manufacturer the Pinnacle hip replacement, which is a metal-on-metal hip replacement system. The jury verdict came back today after only one day of deliberations. The jury verdict awarded $497.6 million in damages to five plaintiffs whose cases were combined as part of a multidistrict litigation. The figure included $360 million in punitive damages against DePuy.

The case is considered to be a bellwether case, meaning the outcome of the case indicates how the courts and juries may see future hip replacement cases. The result of the case was posted on law news site Law360 today.

The device targeted in this lawsuit is the Pinnacle Acetabular Cup System, which is made by DePuy, a division of Johnson & Johnson. One of the key components of the Pinnacle hip replacement is a cobalt and chromium liner in the cup part – which was also a key part of the problem with the device.

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TECHNIKA SH-A366

By Kurt Maier, Attorney
English, Lucas, Priest and Owsley, LLP

The basic components of a negligence case are duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. In slip and fall injury cases, called premises liability cases in legal terms, an injured person must also show that the owner or operator of the premises either caused the hazardous condition that led to his or her injuries or had constructive notice of.

The constructive notice element of proof can be shown in several ways, including proof that the dangerous or defective condition had been in place for a length of time sufficient for the defendant to have become aware of the condition in the exercise of reasonable care. Constructive notice can also be shown through the defendant’s recurring conduct or a continuing condition.

Of course, each case is unique, and disagreements can certainly arise as to whether a defendant was constructively notified of a particular situation. In some such cases, video surveillance footage can be an important piece of evidence, even if the slip and fall injury in question was not captured on camera.

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Empty office workstations.

By Kyle Roby, Attorney and Partner
English, Lucas, Priest and Owsley, LLP

It often comes as a surprise to those injured in car accidents that dealing with one’s own insurance company can be just as vexing and contentious as dealing with the insurance company of the driver whose negligence or recklessness caused the accident.

Fortunately, the law does provide some protection for insureds who have to fight with their own insurance company to get that to which they are contractually entitled. However, the threshold for success in such cases is high, and not every case results in a judgment in the insured’s favor.

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same sex marriage loss of consortiumWhen a husband or wife dies or is severely injured as a result of someone’s negligence, the surviving spouse can typically seek damages for past medical expenses, future medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, impairment of earning capacity and what’s called “loss of consortium.” Essentially, loss of consortium is the loss of the loved one’s love, care, services, assistance, and companionship. Loss of consortium seeks to compensate the surviving spouse for the harm endured to the marital relationship. Damages for loss of consortium can be awarded not only in wrongful death cases but also in cases in which a spouse has been severely injured and is unable to provide the love, care, services, assistance, and companionship that the couple enjoyed when both persons were healthy.

Damages for loss of consortium are only available to married couples. KRS 411.145 states that “either a wife or husband may recover damages against a third person for loss of consortium, resulting from a negligent or wrongful act of such third person.”

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Risperdal

Risperdal

Plaintiffs seeking a judgment against Johnson & Johnson, the makers of the drug Risperdal, saw a big victory this week out of Philadelphia. A jury sided with the family of an autistic boy who grew size 44 DD breasts after taking Risperdal in 2002. The Wall Street Journal, along with many other publications, wrote about the verdict, which was handed down on February 24, 2015.

Growing breasts was one of several risks that Johnson & Johnson knew about but hid from the Food and Drug Administration, lawyers said. The condition is called gynecomastia. Some patients have been forced to undergo surgery to remove the breasts.

Due to the widespread use of this drug, our firm believes there are many patients who have taken Risperdal and may very well have suffered similar problems, or other side effects. ELPO is accepting cases against Johnson & Johnson, the maker of Risperdal, representing children and their families who have been harmed by Risperdal. The drug treats the symptoms of psychiatric disorders. In addition to gynecomastia, there is an increased risk of stroke and diabetes for patients taking Risperdal.

We want to help patients protect their rights, and encourage anyone who has taken Risperdal or who has a family member who has done so to contact us as soon as possible.

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file000894188453 morguefile cohdraThe Western District of Kentucky has ordered portions of a pharmaceutical injury case to trial. In Vanden Bosch v. Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, Inc., two women filed a lawsuit against the drug manufacturer Bayer over health consequences they allegedly sustained after the women used the Mirena contraceptive product. According to the complaint, a Florida woman suffered a chronic health condition following the use of the device after it was implanted into her body in Kentucky. Additionally, a Kentucky woman purportedly became pregnant despite her use of the contraceptive product. Her child allegedly suffered an abnormal chromosome disorder as a result of her exposure to Mirena.

In response to the lawsuit, Bayer filed a Rule 12(b)(6) motion asking the federal court to dismiss the case. When such a motion is filed, the defendant in a civil lawsuit is essentially stating that, even if everything a plaintiff alleged in his or her lawsuit were true, the plaintiff did not assert sufficient information to show that he or she is entitled to a legal remedy. After determining that Kentucky law applied to the case, the federal court addressed Bayer’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Since Kentucky has a one-year statute of limitations for products liability claims, and the Florida woman filed her lawsuit more than one year after her purported injury, the Western District of Kentucky dismissed the woman’s negligence and other products liability causes of action against the drug company. The federal court also dismissed many of the Kentucky woman’s claims against Bayer because pregnancy “is not a legally cognizable injury” in the state.

Next, the Western District of Kentucky dismissed the plaintiffs’ breach of implied warranty claims because there was no “privity of contract” between the parties. Bayer argued that the plaintiffs’ breach of express warranty and Kentucky Consumer Protection Act claims should be dismissed as well, since the women did not purchase Mirena directly from the drug company, but the court disagreed. The federal court stated that the plaintiffs’ express breach of warranty claims required further evidence and should be fleshed out at trial. Also, Kentucky case law provides an exception to the Consumer Protection Act’s privity requirement when a manufacturer makes “valid express warranties for the benefit of consumers.” According to the federal court, the exception applied to the plaintiffs’ case.

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