Cases & Deals

Four clients prevail on products liability claim in Northern District of Illinois

Client(s) Pharmaceutical companies

An Illinois federal court dismissed two pharmaceutical companies, and granted summary judgment to two others, in a product liability lawsuit. Jones Day represented each of the defendants. The plaintiff, a Georgia resident, initially brought her lawsuit against three pharmaceutical companies in 2010 in the Eastern District of New York, claiming that she had been injured by a medication she had been prescribed in 2004. After successfully moving to transfer the case to the Northern District of Illinois, Jones Day obtained dismissal for one defendant for lack of service, and the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed her claims against the remaining defendants. She re-filed her lawsuit in 2015, alleging several causes of action against the same defendants as her 2010 action, and eventually adding a fourth pharmaceutical manufacturer (also represented by Jones Day) as a defendant. Jones Day successfully moved to dismiss all counts against two of the defendant companies (including the one dismissed in the original lawsuit). Two claims remained: strict liability/failure to warn (against both remaining defendants) and negligent misrepresentation (against one of the remaining defendants).

The Court granted summary judgment on the remaining counts. It held that the strict liability/failure to warn claim failed because it was (1) barred by the statute of repose and (2) preempted. The Court also granted summary judgment on the negligent failure to warn claim because (1) it is not a valid claim under Georgia law, which governed the dispute, and (2) Plaintiff presented no admissible evidence that the defendant made any representation to Plaintiff or her doctor.