José A.Isasi II

Partner

Chicago + 1.312.269.4083

José Isasi is a first-chair trial lawyer who has tried to verdict dozens of federal and state jury and bench trials in product liability and commercial disputes throughout the United States, receiving national recognition for his successful outcomes. He also serves as lead trial counsel in commercial arbitrations. José focuses on defending product manufacturers, particularly pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers, in product liability and commercial disputes, including multidistrict litigations and other national representations. He regularly counsels clients on strategies to minimize litigation risk.

Like others at Jones Day, José has an active trial practice. During one 16-month period from 2017 to 2019, he served as first chair trial counsel in four separate multiweek jury trials that resulted in complete defense verdicts. These matters, defending product manufacturers, included wrongful death lawsuits seeking tens of millions of dollars in compensatory and punitive damages.

José has spoken extensively worldwide on litigation-related topics. He is a past director and current faculty member of the ABA/ABOTA National Trial Academy. He is a member of numerous legal associations, including the Product Liability Advisory Council, the Defense Research Institute, the Georgetown Law Alumni Council, and the ABA's Minority Trial Lawyer Committee. He also serves on Jones Day's firmwide Diversity, Inclusion & Advancement Committee, the Chicago Office's Diversity Committee, and the board of Duke University's Hispanic/Latino Alumni Association. José is actively involved in community organizations, serving on the board of directors of Legal Prep Charter Academy and Junior Achievement of Chicago's board, and has been recognized by "Who's Who in Hispanic Chicago."

Experience

R.J. Reynolds wins complete defense verdict in Russell wrongful death lawsuit
On January 25, 2019 after a trial lasting 15 days, a jury in Lakeland, Florida returned a complete defense verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a wrongful death action.

Universities defend multidistrict putative class action litigation brought by former football players
Jones Day is serving as lead counsel for all NCAA member institution defendants in a multidistrict litigation ("MDL") consolidating more than 300 putative class actions brought on behalf of former football players.

R.J. Reynolds wins complete defense verdict in Hochreiter wrongful death lawsuit
On November 16, 2018, after a trial lasting 11 days, a jury in Orlando, Florida returned a complete defense verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a wrongful death action.

R.J. Reynolds wins complete defense verdict in Damiano personal injury lawsuit
On May 23, 2018, after a trial lasting 11 days, a jury in Sarasota, Florida returned a complete defense verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a personal injury lawsuit.

Medical device manufacturer obtains voluntary dismissal of product liability suit surrounding allegedly defective blood glucose meter
A medical device manufacturer represented by Jones Day obtained voluntary dismissal of a product liability lawsuit in which plaintiffs claimed that a user of the manufacturer's blood glucose meter fell and fractured her arm while using the meter to monitor her diabetes.

R.J. Reynolds wins complete defense verdict in Jones wrongful death lawsuit
On August 23, 2017, after a trial lasting more than three weeks, a state court jury in Vero Beach, Florida returned a unanimous defense verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a wrongful death lawsuit.

Medical device manufacturer obtains dismissal with prejudice of product liability suit after motion to dismiss briefing
Jones Day successfully defended a medical device manufacturer in a product liability suit alleging that the manufacturer's diabetes monitoring system was defective.

Medical device manufacturer obtains successful arbitration result
A medical device manufacturer represented by Jones Day was awarded damages by an International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution arbitrator for claims related to breaches of the exclusivity provisions of a supply and distribution agreement.

Takeda defends product liability claims related to pharmaceutical product Actos
Jones Day is defending Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Inc. and Takeda Pharmaceuticals Company Limited as trial counsel in over 3000 suits pending in a consolidated proceeding in Cook County, Illinois related to its Type 2 diabetes drug, Actos.

R.J. Reynolds wins jury verdict in Starbuck ''Engle progeny'' lawsuit
On December 16, 2014, following two weeks of trial, a jury in Jacksonville, Florida returned a verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a personal injury action.

R.J. Reynolds wins jury verdict in Bishop ''Engle progeny'' lawsuit
On November 5, 2014, after almost three weeks of trial, a state court jury in Orlando, Florida returned a verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company.

Medical device manufacturer prevails in preliminary injunction dispute over breach of agreement by supplier
Jones Day served as lead counsel representing a medical device manufacturer in a suit seeking injunctive relief to prevent breach of a supply and distribution agreement by a supplier.

Medical device manufacturer defends against allegations of breach of supply agreement
Jones Day served as lead counsel for a medical device manufacturer in defense of commercial litigation arising from an alleged breach of a supply agreement.

The following represents experience prior to joining Jones Day.

Lead counsel for a medical device manufacturer in litigation claiming catastrophic overdelivery of medication allegedly caused by a defect in client's model intravenous pump.

Served as national counsel for medical device manufacturer in defense of bellwether suits set for trial in multidistrict proceeding arising from the sale of implantable mesh products.

Lead counsel representing a pharmaceutical manufacturer in numerous personal injury suits filed across the United States arising from a patient's development of Stevens-Johnson Syndrome/Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis allegedly due to use of client's products.

Served as national counsel to a multinational pharmaceutical manufacturer, representing the client in the defense of personal injury suits and proactively counseling on litigation and regulatory risks.

Lead trial counsel for a pharmaceutical manufacturer in the successful defense of litigation alleging breach of a commercial development and supply agreement. The matter was submitted to binding arbitration, and after several days of hearings, the client received a finding of no liability on plaintiff's claims and an award on its counterclaims, including attorneys' fees.

Served as lead counsel representing former executives of a pharmaceutical company in multidistrict litigation alleging product liability and consumer fraud claims arising from a Class I recall of an allegedly improperly manufactured heart medication.

Served as national counsel for a pharmaceutical manufacturer in personal injury cases arising from claimed cardiotoxicity, including conducted oral argument on client's behalf before the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation.

Served as lead counsel representing a manufacturer of surgical devices utilized during "beating heart" surgery in defense of a lawsuit claiming design defect that allegedly led to the death of a patient undergoing surgery.

Served as lead counsel representing a medical device manufacturer in defense of claims of multiple failures of implantable cardioverter defibrillators and leads, allegedly resulting in significant injuries and several corrective surgeries.

Lead counsel in the successful representation of both a products manufacturer and a government contractor in litigation alleging that workers were seriously injured due to mercury spills and exposure to mercury-containing products at the Los Alamos National Laboratory government research facility.

Lead counsel representing several corporate and individual defendants in litigation in the Southern District of New York. Obtained dismissal at the pleadings stage of more than two dozen claims against several corporate and individual defendants. The claims, which included breach of contract/fiduciary duty and RICO, arose from the sale of participation interest in pooled mortgages insured by the FHA.

Regional counsel for an automobile manufacturer in class action and individual litigation alleging personal and economic injuries related to unintended acceleration of vehicles.

Counseled medical device manufacturer in multidistrict litigation, overseeing multiple aspects of expert discovery. The litigation involved 34 putative class actions, more than 30 state court actions, and more than 300 cases in total. The cases involved allegations of products liability as well as third-party beneficiary and Medicare secondary payor claims. The potential claimants numbered 87,000.

Regional counsel for a national identity theft protection service in a series of putative class action suits alleging consumer fraud and deceptive business practices. The suits were transferred to a multidistrict proceeding in the District of Arizona and ultimately settled after class-focused discovery.

Lead trial counsel in a two-week jury trial representing a government contractor at Los Alamos National Laboratory against several individuals who claimed to have been exposed to toxic gases while working at the lab's plutonium processing facility due to intentional misconduct. The jury returned a complete defense verdict in favor of the client.

Served as lead counsel representing a component manufacturer in product liability litigation arising from a work site explosion. After aggressively pursuing discovery of the scientific basis for the plaintiffs' claim, the plaintiffs' expert conceded no reliable theory of product failure existed and the claims were dismissed with prejudice.

Lead trial counsel in a bench trial before the Delaware Chancery Court representing stockholders in litigation against their company seeking to compel a stockholder meeting. At the conclusion of the trial, the chancellor ruled directly from the bench and granted a verdict for all relief sought by the clients.

Lead trial counsel in a four-week federal jury trial representing an individual consumer who alleged that a major interstate moving company breached its contract and engaged in racketeering activities in the course of performing interstate household moves. The case settled after a jury awarded damages to the client.

Lead trial counsel in a one-week federal bench trial representing a corporation in post-sale dispute over failure to disclose material liabilities during an asset sale. Court awarded client significant damages and costs, after which the case settled on very favorable terms for client.

Speaking Engagements

  • September 28 , 2016.Emerging Issues and Strategic Considerations for the Life Sciences Industry in US/European Products Liability Litigation
  • September 22, 2016Emerging Issues in Product Liability Litigation, 2016 Health Care Enforcement, Litigation, and Compliance CLE Conference,
  • February 4, 2016Emerging Issues in Product Liability Litigation
  • December 3, 2015Best Practices for Generic, Innovator and Biosimilar Manufacturers to Combat Anticipated Plaintiffs' Tactics Speaker, ACI 20th Annual Drug and Medical Device Litigation Conference
  • October 7, 2015The State of the Hispanic American Attorney in Chicago Law Firms
  • June 11, 2015Mass Tort Litigation: Lessons Learned and Legal Issues Speaker, Jones Day MCLE University
  • June 12, 2014Emerging Enforcement Trends, Litigation Risks & Compliance Issues for the Health Care Industry, speaker, Jones Day MCLE University
  • October 30, 2013The Impact of the Affordable Care Act on Medtronic as a Large Employer
  • September 20, 2013Warning! Keeping the Label Out of the Case, speaker, The Doctors Company, 2013 Legal Summit - Midwest
  • October 20, 2012Career Focus: Developing Your Professional Gameplan, speaker, Georgetown University Law Center
  • May 16, 2012It's NOT Just Legalese: Practical Implications of "Standard" Contract Terms for Life Science Companies, speaker, Berkley Life Sciences 2012 Producer Council Meeting
  • February 24, 2012Law Firm Economics 101: The Changing Legal Landscape, speaker, Law Firm Boot Camp of Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms
  • May 19, 2011Can You Keep a Secret? Confidentiality Considerations for Litigation in the Digital Age, speaker, Personal Care Products Council's Legal and Regulatory Conference,
  • April 27, 2011View from the Bench: The Judicial Perspective on Daubert Motions and Challenges, panel chair, ACI Chemical Products Liability Environmental Litigation Conference
  • July 21 - 22, 2010Judicial Insights on Current Product Liability Trends for Life Science Products, panel chair, American Conference Institute's Products Liability Boot Camp for the Life Science Industry
  • April 15 - 16, 2010Examining the Future of Preemption as a Defense Strategy, conference chairman and speaker, Marcus Evans Legal Series 6th Annual Drug & Medical Device Litigation Forum
  • February 11, 2010Alternative Fee Arrangements: Maximizing Your Relationships With Diverse Outside Counsel, speaker, Corporate Member Meeting of the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms
  • June 24 - 25, 2009Drug and Medical Device Product Liability Pre-Trial Preparation: Daubert Motions, Summary Judgment and Other Preemptive Defenses, speaker, 3rd Annual Drug and Medical Device On Trial Conference
  • March 2, 2009Exploring How Recent Rulings in Pre-Emption Will Change the Face of Litigation, conference chairman and speaker, Marcus Evans Legal Series 5th Annual Drug & Medical Device Litigation Forum
  • March 2, 2009Understanding the FDA and the Evolution of Regulations: The Key to Making Your Company Better Prepared, speaker and conference chairman, Marcus Evans Legal Series 5th Annual Drug & Medical Device Litigation Forum
  • February 25, 2009Preventing Charges of Off-Label Promotion When Disseminating Clinical Trial Materials, speaker, 11th Annual Managing Legal Risks in Clinical Trials Conference
  • February 11, 2009Negotiating and Drafting Effective Alternative Fee Arrangements, speaker, American Conference Institute's 2nd Annual Corporate Counsel Forum on Reducing Legal Costs
  • September 23 - 24, 2008Exploring the Intersection of Regulatory Oversight and Consumer Fraud Litigation, speaker, American Conference Institute's Drug an Device Forum and Defending Consumer Fraud Economic Injury Claims
  • May 19 - 20, 2008Practical Defense Issues, speaker, Insurance Coverage 2008: Claim Trends & Litigation, Practicing Law Institute
  • December 12 - 14, 2007Swift and Constant Attacks by the Press and Academic/Scientific Sources, speaker, American Conference Institute's 12th Annual Drug and Medical Device Litigation Conference
  • August 2005The Use of Lay Experts and Opinions on Specialized Knowledge in Drug Cases, speaker, ALI-ABA Advanced Course of Study: Pharmaceutical and Medical Device Issues
  • July 2004Key Issues for Final Trial Preparation, speaker, ALI-ABA Advanced Course of Study: Products Liability
  • February 2004Discovery, Strategy & Case Management Issues, speaker, Practicing Law Institute's Insurance Coverage: Claims Trends & Litigation Conference
  • 2004Chen v. Mayflower: The Trial Of A RICO Suit, speaker, ABA Annual Meeting
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