What are Mass Torts?
A mass tort case arises when many people are harmed by the negligent, careless and sometimes intentional behavior of a similar product. The products involved in these cases are often manufactured, distributed and sold by either one or just a few companies. This is often very beneficial to individual persons making a claim because the group can share the same experts, research, industry knowledge and efficient movement through the court process.
Characteristics of Mass Tort Cases
Our experienced mass tort attorneys have identified several common and unique traits of mass tort cases. These characteristics include:
A Large Number of Claims Arising From the Use of a Single Product
Any time a large number of people are injured by the same or similar defective product, a mass tort claim may arise. This can include manufactured products like vehicles or medical equipment, defective drugs or fraudulent action by a company that adversely effects a mass number of people.
The Persons Making a Claim Share a Common Goal
The overall value of all claims involved tends to increase or decrease based on the same facts. For example, if a mass group of people experience unexplained blindness after using a drug due to the negligence of the drug manufacturer, the aggregate value of all persons who experienced blindness from that particular drug increases.
Consolidation for Pretrial Purposes
Many times mass tort claims are consolidated into one court proceeding initially so that one court conducts all preliminary issues such as resolving questions of law and completing discovery. This leads to more efficient movement of all claims through the court system, rather than having individual claims occurring all over the map at the same time.
Each Person Has Their Own Individual Claim
Although claims may be consolidated initially for purposes of judicial economy and efficiency, each individual claimant maintains control over the decision making involving their individual claim. In short, you will not automatically give up your right to settle your own claim for an amount that you are happy with.
Examples of Mass Tort Case
Experienced mass tort lawyers also notice that there are common examples of products or services that tend to become involved in mass tort litigation. Examples include:
- Defective drugs
- Defective medical devices
- Chemical products used in agriculture or businesses
- Consumer products that are defective or contained harmful chemicals
It is important to understand that each mass tort claim is different. While your claim may bare similarities to claims held by other people, your claim is yours to control and may be different or even more severe than others. The only way to effectively evaluate one of these claims is to contact one of our skilled mass tort attorneys today.
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