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Jury Orders Makers of Actos to Pay $9 Billion in Punitive Damages

Meyerkord & Kurth, LLC: A Legacy of Legal Innovation

In the first federal Actos bladder cancer lawsuit, a Louisiana jury has ordered Japanese drug maker Takeda Pharmaceutical Company and drug maker Eli Lilly & Co. to pay $9 billion in punitive damages after hearing 33 days of trial testimony. Specifically, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company was ordered to may $6 billion, while Eli Lilly & Co. was ordered to pay the remaining $3 billion. The jury issued the likely world record in punitive damages against a pharmaceutical company after finding the companies' diabetes drug Actos caused the plaintiff to develop bladder cancer. This punitive damages award comes after the man who had filed the lawsuit and blamed the drug for his cancer was already awarded $1.5 million in compensatory damages. Unlike compensatory damages, punitive damages are issued specifically to punish the defendant. This specific trial, which began on February 3, was the first chosen "bellwether" case in the federal multidistrict litigation. Bellwether trials are typical in mass tort pharmaceutical and medical device litigation because it is impractical to litigate thousands of cases. However, there are currently about 3,000 bladder cases pending in the Actos multidistrict litigation. The judge in this case found that the maker of Actos acted in bad faith during the discovery process. Because of that finding, the jury was told that Takeda hid or destroyed thousands of important documents.

Drug safety is at the forefront to our minds when it comes to treating medical conditions. The experienced Missouri product liability attorneys at Meyerkord & Kurth, LLC will fight for you if it is discovered that you have taken an unsafe medicine and have suffered serious side effects. Contact our knowledgeable family of attorneys at (314) 436-9958 or (800) 391-4318 if you have suffered from a loss due to the negligence of a manufacturer of consumer products such as a medicine that is later found to be unsafe.

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