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Levaquin MDL Settlement Update: Phase 1 Plaintiffs Have Signed a Settlement Agreement

Levaquin MDL Settlement Update: Phase 1 Plaintiffs Have Signed a Settlement AgreementCourt convened on January 8, 2013 for a Status Conference for Levaquin lawsuits that have been consolidated into In Re: Levaquin Products Liability Litigation, the Multi-District Litigation (MDL) that is being heard by U.S. District Judge John R. Tunheim in the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota. Though the plaintiffs’ committee and the defendant’s representation only met for a half hour, they brought forth important updates in the Levaquin MDL.

According to information provided by the Defendants, there are currently 1000 cases pending in the Levaquin MDL “that are in the process of settling, and will soon be dismissed.” Once the settlement of these 1000 cases is complete, the Levaquin MDL will consist of 900 cases.

In state Levaquin lawsuits, there is a mass tort litigation that has been established in a New Jersey state court with 1400 cases that remain open. Further updates about the New Jersey mass tort Levaquin litigation will be available after the next Status Conference, which is scheduled for January 25. To date, the New Jersey mass tort Levaquin litigation represents the most Levaquin lawsuits being heard by a state court.

As the Levaquin MDL Status Conference minutes detail, there are “three cases pending in Illinois…one case in Pennsylvania and one in Mississippi.”

As to the status of settlement negotiations in the Levaquin MDL, both parties have come to a settlement agreement in Phase 1 cases. The plaintiffs with cases consolidated into the Phase 1 pool have signed the settlement agreement.

The plaintiffs’ committee has since begun work on plans to allocate the settlement funds. For cases consolidated into Phase 2 and Phase 3 pools, both parties are still working on negotiating a settlement agreement.

Levaquin is a drug manufactured by OrthoMcNeil Pharmaceutical, Inc., a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary, that is prescribed to patients suffering from a bacterial infection of the lungs, skin, and urinary tract. Some patients who were prescribed Levaquin, and subsequently ingested the drug to treat their bacterial infection, experienced serious side effects.

The drug Levaquin has been known to inflict severe tendon damage, including tendon inflammation, tendonitis, joint immobility, and tendon rupture.