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May 14th, 2018

West Virginia High Court Soundly Rejects Trial Bar’s Theory of Innovator Liability

On May 11, 2018, the West Virginia Supreme Court issued its long-awaited opinion in the case of McNair v. Johnson & Johnson.  The court joined at least 36 other courts, including six federal courts and various state courts in rejecting innovator liability, recognizing that it would disrupt the innovators’ ability to invest further in innovation which could lead to more life-saving drugs.  The court reasoned that innovator liability was inconsistent with both West Virginia tort law principles and public policy.

Innovator liability, which seeks to hold brand name drug manufacturers liable for harm caused by products manufactured by generic companies, has been pushed by trial lawyers around the country . . . → Read More: West Virginia High Court Soundly Rejects Trial Bar’s Theory of Innovator Liability

March 22nd, 2018

ATRA Disappointed in Massachusetts Supreme Court’s Decision to Adopt Expansive Theory of “Innovator Liability”

On March 16, 2018, in a very disappointing decision, the Massachusetts Supreme Court adopted an expansive theory of civil liability known as “innovator liability.” The state joins perennial Judicial Hellhole, California, as the only other state to adopt this dangerous theory of liability. The Alabama Supreme Court adopted “innovator liability” in 2014, but the decision was quickly overturned by the legislature.

In Rafferty v. Merck, the court held that a brand-name drug manufacturer can be sued for recklessness if it intentionally failed to update the label on its drug, knowing that there is a risk of death or injury with its use, that makers of generic versions must adopt . . . → Read More: ATRA Disappointed in Massachusetts Supreme Court’s Decision to Adopt Expansive Theory of “Innovator Liability”

April 30th, 2015

Alabama Lawmakers Slap Down State’s High Court on ‘Innovator Liability’

Among many others, the Wall Street Journal today heralded Alabama lawmakers’ slap-down earlier this week of recent state supreme court decisions that embraced the both ridiculous and dangerous legal theory peddled by the plaintiffs’ bar as “innovator liability” . . . → Read More: Alabama Lawmakers Slap Down State’s High Court on ‘Innovator Liability’

March 14th, 2013

Wall Street Journal Adds to Criticism of Alabama High Court’s ‘Innovator Liability’ Decision

Urging justices of Alabama’s Supreme Court to reconsider their January decision that absurdly held a brand-name drug maker liable for the allegedly negative side effects of a generic drug made by a competitor, the Wall Street Journal today adds to the criticism of Wyeth v. Weeks . . . → Read More: Wall Street Journal Adds to Criticism of Alabama High Court’s ‘Innovator Liability’ Decision

January 15th, 2013

First Outrageous State Supreme Court Ruling of 2013

It only took eleven days for a state supreme court to issue the first outrageous liability-expanding ruling of 2013. The ruling abandons a core principle of law– that manufacturers are liable only for injuries caused by their own products, not the products of others — and replaces it with, what is known in strict legal terms as, the “someone has to pay” approach. . . . → Read More: First Outrageous State Supreme Court Ruling of 2013