On Tuesday, September 4, 2012, new regulations took effect in the state of New Jersey regarding mass tort litigation, which have changed how Fosamax lawsuits filed in state courts will be referred to.
Currently, there are two sets of consolidated Fosamax lawsuits the media and the legal community are keeping a close eye on: the federal Fosamax cases, known as Fosamax multidistrict litigation (MDL), which are pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey before District Court Judge Joel A. Pisano, and the New Jersey Fosamax mass tort in New Jersey Superior Court in Atlantic County before Judge Carol E. Higbee, which will now be known as Fosamax “Multicounty Litigation.”
Mass Tort Rule Replaced by ‘Multicounty Litigation’
The intent of the new regulations, according to the Administrative Office of the Courts Directive #08-12, issued on August 7, 2012, is to make New Jersey state court procedures more like federal court procedures, hence the name change of Rule 4:38A from “Centralized Management of Mass Torts” to “Centralized Management of Multicounty Litigation.” The New Jersey State Supreme Court, like the federal Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML), hears all motions requesting the consolidation of mass tort cases but on the state level. The guidelines require the court to consider similar circumstances, just as the JPML does when deciding whether to centralize large numbers of cases.
The new rule is likely to clear up any confusion that might exist when attempting to differentiate state and federal Fosamax cases. “Fosamax MDL” refers to the federal lawsuits, and, going forward, “Fosamax MCL” describes the claims filed in New Jersey state court.
It is expected that the MCL process will be used frequently, as many healthcare and pharmaceutical companies, including Merck, the manufacturer of Fosamax, are headquartered in New Jersey.
RLG Represents Injured Fosamax Users
If you have been taking Fosamax for an extended period of time and have suffered a femur fracture or another injury, it could be because of the medication, and you might be eligible for compensation by filing a lawsuit against Merck. The lawyers at the Rottenstein Law Group can help. Our Fosamax lawyers have over 25 years of collective experience advocating for clients in consumer product injury and mass tort cases. Please fill out our contact form or call us at 1-877-332-2347, and one of our lawyers will be in touch.
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