Multidistrict Litigation Is Better Than Joining a Hip Replacement Class Action Lawsuit
When a product such as DePuy Orthopaedics’ recalled ASR XL Acetabular System or ASR Hip Resurfacing System injures many people, recipients often believe that the best method of obtaining compensation is by joining a hip replacement class action suit. They suspect that other injured people will sue the same manufacturer, and that the efficient process of class action lawsuits will save them time and money (in the form of legal fees). However, when products such as DePuy’s have injured thousands of people, a hip replacement class action lawsuit is usually not the most effective way of obtaining the highest amount of compensation through the U.S. legal system. Recognizing this, the American legal system created the multidistrict litigation (MDL) system.
MDL Is Better Than a Hip Replacement Class Action Lawsuit
Class action lawsuits work when a small number of defendants (often just one) injures a large number of plaintiffs. Filing individual lawsuits would be impractical for all the plaintiffs, and many of them have neither the time nor the incentive to prosecute their cases on their own. Class action lawsuits, though, distribute damages evenly to the plaintiff class. If some plaintiffs suffered greater financial injuries than others, they will be undercompensated, and if others only suffered negligible injuries, they may be overcompensated. Consequently, class action lawsuits tend to be best for situations where the plaintiffs’ injuries are monetary—and uniform—in nature.
By contrast, MDL allows plaintiffs to retain their individual cases yet still benefit from a streamlined pre-trial process similar to that of a class action. One of the parties files a motion with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation, which decides whether to consolidate the cases and send them to a “transferee judge” within the federal court system. All MDL proceedings occur before this judge, whose rulings apply to all parties’ cases, and before whom all pretrial motions and discovery (the pretrial information-gathering process) takes place. Then the court schedules a group of bellwether (early) trials to help all parties gauge the potential outcomes of their own cases. Some will typically settle out of court, while others go to trial themselves.
RLG Represents Those Injured by Hip Replacements
In a situation where victims’ injuries vary greatly, such as that of the DePuy hip replacement recall, the amount of compensation from a hip replacement class action lawsuit might be insufficient for many plaintiffs. Because of this, in mass tort situations MDL is the better route for their cases. If you received a dangerous DePuy implant, instead of joining a class action lawsuit consider filing an individual one instead by calling [phone_number] or [contact]clicking on this link[/contact] and speaking to one of RLG’s hip replacement lawyers.
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