According to legal experts there are more than 100 Tylenol (acetaminophen) liver damage and liver failure cases pending in state and federal courts across the nation. In April, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation established consolidated proceedings for all federal Tylenol lawsuits. The JPML ordered the transfer of 27 complaints to U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
All of the claims state that users suffered liver damage side effects after Tylenol use, and that Johnson & Johnson (Tylenol manufacturer) failed to provide adequate warning about the risk of liver damage side effects from acetaminophen usage.
According to the parties there are at least 80 pending lawsuits in the federal court system and 15 cases pending in New Jersey state court, 4 in California state court, 2 in Pennsylvania state court and 1 pending Texas state court action.
Tylenol New Jersey State Consolidation
Recently, Johnson & Johnson filed a request to centralize the Tylenol liver injury lawsuits pending in New Jersey, asking the state Supreme Court to establish similar coordinated proceedings before one state court judge as part of an MCL or Multi-County Litigation.
Bellwether Trials Anticipated
Bellwether trials, in complex pharmaceutical litigation are beneficial for the MDL process and the global resolution. The trials help the parties to organize the pretrial discovery, evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of evidence, and facilitate potential Tylenol settlements or other resolutions for the litigation.
Tylenol, Acetaminophen Side Effects Linked to Liver Damage
The FDA has indicated that acetaminophen liver side effects is a leading cause of liver failure in the U.S., resulting in more than 50,000 emergency room visits, 25,000 hospitalizations and over 450 deaths annually. In 2002, an FDA advisory committee meeting found that there are between 1,000 and 2,000 acetaminophen-induced liver failures each year.
Johnson & Johnson lowered the maximum recommended dosage on Tylenol and other acetaminophen-based products from 4,000 mg per day to 3,000 mg per day in 2011 after the FDA announced new limits on acetaminophen levels in prescription painkillers like Vicodin and Percocet.