WASHINGTON, D.C., July 9, 2018 – In making a rare midyear addition to its annual “Judicial Hellholes” report, the American Tort Reform Foundation announced that the Twin Cities of Minnesota […]
ATRA Critical of California High Court’s ‘Latest Gift to Plaintiffs’ Bar’
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 22, 2017 – The American Tort Reform Association is criticizing yesterday’s California Supreme Court decision to allow an “innovator liability” claim to proceed to trial as “both […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 22, 2017 – The American Tort Reform Association is criticizing yesterday’s California Supreme Court decision to allow an “innovator liability” claim to proceed to trial as “both an outlier and the court’s latest gift to the personal injury bar” just before Christmas.
“Crafted primarily by personal injury lawyers desperate to get around longstanding federal law that shields generic drugmakers from lawsuits over the substance of their medications’ warning labels,” explained ATRA president Tiger Joyce, “the novel theory of innovator liability effectively seeks to turn products liability law on its head.
“Fortunately, the argument that original brand-name drugmakers should be held liable for injuries allegedly arising from generic drugs manufactured, marketed and sold by third-party generic drugmakers has been widely rejected by courts across the country.
“But as the latest edition of ATRA’s annual Judicial Hellholes report makes clear, California’s plaintiff-friendly civil courts rank as the second most unfair in the nation for good reason,” Joyce continued. “And the state high court’s embrace of innovator liability in T.H. v. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation will only worsen that reputation.”
Joyce noted that, initially, the case had been “reasonably dismissed” by San Diego County Superior Court Judge Joan M. Lewis who concluded that the plaintiffs’ claim, seeking to hold Novartis liable for injuries they suffered in utero after their mother was prescribed a generic asthma medication six years after Novartis had ceased manufacturing its brand-name version and sold its interest in the drug, was precluded by precedent.
But Judge Lewis was unanimously reversed in March 2016 by a three judge appellate panel that remanded the case for trial and invited the plaintiffs to amend their complaint. That appellate decision was upheld by the high court yesterday, and the case can now proceed to trial.
“At least 35 different courts, including six federal courts and eight different state courts, have rejected innovator liability, recognizing both the inherent injustice of subjecting brand-name manufacturers to unpredictable and potentially immense liability for products they did not make or sell, and the likely negative impact on future investments in innovative, often life-improving and life-saving medicines and devices.
“It’s too soon to know if the defendant will appeal this California Supreme Court decision to the U.S. Supreme Court. But if it does, ATRA and its members certainly hope the highest court will hear arguments and definitively clarify the law,” Joyce concluded.
The American Tort Reform Association, based in Washington, D.C., is the only national organization dedicated exclusively to tort and liability reform through public education and the enactment of legislation. Its members include nonprofit organizations and small and large companies, as well as trade, business and professional associations from the state and national level. The American Tort Reform Foundation is a sister organization dedicated primarily to research and public education.
News & Events
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 18, 2018 – The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) encourages Oklahoma Attorney General candidates AG Mike Hunter, Gentner Drummond, Mark Myles, and Angela Bonilla to sign ATRA’s […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 11, 2018 – The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) today praised South Carolina Attorney General candidates AG Alan Wilson and William Herlong for embracing good-government principles by […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., May 10, 2018 – The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) today praised Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Laura Ellsworth for embracing good-government principles by signing ATRA’s 2018 Transparency Code pledge […]
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WASHINGTON, D.C., March 29, 2018 – The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) today applauded Missouri lawmakers’ final passage of the Transparency in Private Attorney Contracting (TiPAC) Act, good-government legislation that […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 23, 2018– The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) today applauded Wisconsin lawmakers’ final passage of a multi-part legal reform package that includes very important reforms to the […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 22, 2018 – The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) today applauded Kentucky lawmakers’ final passage of the Transparency in Private Attorney Contracting (TiPAC) Act, good-government legislation that […]
High Court’s Contempt for Lawmakers’ Authority, Lawsuit Rackets Place Florida atop Latest ‘Judicial Hellholes’ List
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 5, 2017 – The American Tort Reform Foundation issued its 2017-2018 Judicial Hellholes® report today, naming courts in Florida, California, Missouri, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 1, 2017 – This week, the Wisconsin Legislature unveiled its 2018 civil justice platform which features two of the American Tort Reform Association’s highest priorities: discovery […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., November15, 2017 – During its annual fall legislative conference in Austin, Texas last evening, the American Tort Reform Association presented Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker with its “Civil Justice […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., October 3, 2017 – The American Tort Reform Association is cheering a U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit decision last Friday that reversed a record-setting $663 […]
ATRA Backs Congressman Faso’s Pro-Growth Reform Bill Aimed at New York’s Antiquated and Costly ‘Scaffold Law’
WASHINGTON, D.C., September 19, 2017 – The American Tort Reform Association today announced its support for reform legislation introduced by Congressman John Faso (R-NY) that “will allow the federal government […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 28, 2017 —The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA), along with the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) on Friday […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 23, 2017 – The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) today praised Virginia attorney general candidate John Adams for embracing good-government principles by signing ATRA’s 2017 Transparency Code […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 22, 2017 – Citing California’s stubborn and long criticized reluctance to adopt unambiguously the more exacting Daubert standard for expert evidence used in all federal courts and […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 19, 2017 – Acknowledging the “growing scope, seriousness and complexity of our nation’s problems with the abuse of federally approved pain medication,” the American Tort Reform Association […]
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 19, 2017 – With today’s announced decision of a third significant jurisdictional case by the U.S. Supreme Court this term, the American Tort Reform Association applauded the […]
ATRA Cheers Enactment of ‘Expert Witness’ Reform, Says Old Standard Helped Make Missouri the ‘Show Me Your Lawsuits State’
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 28, 2017 – With Gov. Eric Greitens expected to sign a key tort reform bill into law today, the American Tort Reform Association pointed again “to the […]
Costly New Anti-Arbitration Rule Aimed at Nursing Homes Is Administration’s Latest Gift to Trial Lawyers
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