What Is a Mass Tort?
To understand what a mass tort is, it would be helpful to understand what a tort is in general. A tort is ordinarily an act or omission by one party or a group of parties that causes another person (or a group of people) to be harmed or injured, often because of negligence. These individuals or groups often file their own personal lawsuits against the person(s) who caused their injury or harm. A mass tort groups these individual lawsuits alleging harm or injury together, because each of these individual lawsuits involves common questions of fact relating to how these individuals were harmed.
While the mass tort groups the individual lawsuits together, the individual plaintiffs however, are treated separately. The plaintiffs in a mass tort lawsuit make substantively the same allegations, such as claiming injury from the same defendant(s) in the same way, but the severity of their specific manifestations of harm or injury, for example, may be different amongst the many plaintiffs.
Mass torts are often used when plaintiffs have brought lawsuits for damages against pharmaceutical or medical device companies for injuries or recalls.
Mass torts often proceed as a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the Federal system. MDLs are established by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML), following an Order of Consolidation of cases that occurs in an MDL and places all the cases before a single judge in one court for all future proceedings, including trial. The intent is to bring more efficiency to the legal process and reduce a drain on court resources, including the time and effort of all parties. Several state courts have similar procedures. For example, in California they are called Judicial Council Coordinated Proceedings (JCCP).
Examples of Past Mass Tort Litigation We Handle
3M Military Earplug Cases
Mass tort litigation can have several advantages by providing a cost effective means of seeking justice. It is often less burden on the plaintiffs, and easier to prove claims. However, such litigation also presents unique challenges to courts and defendants. Those challenges are best met by hiring an experienced team.
If you believe that you or a loved one suffered from an injury common to a large group of people Call US Today. (480) 733-4800