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Product Liability

Arnold & Porter's Product Liability group is a life sciences litigation powerhouse. We have handled nearly every kind of products litigation in the life sciences space, from mass torts to individual lawsuits. We excel at helping clients take proactive measures to minimize the risks of product liability litigation and, if necessary, to succeed in the courtroom. We bring the assurance of a veteran team with decades of experience to address the major issues companies face in product liability litigation, making the most of the learned intermediary defense, consumer fraud defenses, federal preemption defenses, and innovative settlement strategies.

  • Strategic Litigation Counsel: Viewed as "master strategists," our team is called on to serve as national coordinating counsel, lead trial counsel, class action counsel, or appellate counsel for matters requiring innovative advocacy.

  • Established Record in High-Stakes Cases: National counsel for some of the most significant products litigation in the last decade: Abilify®, Avelox®, Cipro®, Dilantin®, Fen-Phen, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Plavix®, Proton Pump Inhibitors, Reglan®, Seroquel®, Testosterone Replacement Therapy, Viagra, Xarelto®, Zantac®, and Zoloft®.

  • Trial Focus: We bring deep trial experience, with a proven record of successful defense in pharmaceutical product liability cases.

Finalist: Product Liability Department of the Year —The American Lawyer
Sources agree that Arnold & Porter is "a key firm in the pharmaceutical sector." —Chambers USA

Experience Highlights

  • AstraZeneca as national counsel in multidistrict litigation involving proton pump inhibitors, Prilosec® and Nexium®.
  • Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, now Endo Pharmaceuticals, in obtaining jury verdict in bellwether trial for multidistrict litigation involving testosterone replacement therapy.
  • Bayer as national counsel in defending its oral anticoagulant prescription medicine, Xarelto®. The cases were coordinated in an MDL proceeding, as well as coordinated state court proceedings. Based on our successful record of judgments, the companies agreed to a favorable settlement.
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi in ending 12 years of litigation regarding their blood thinner drug, Plavix®, without a single trial or settlement payment. The litigation spurred the US Supreme Court's review of critical specific jurisdiction issues and resulted in the landmark BMS v. Superior Court of California decision.
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb as national counsel in employing novel strategies that led to global settlement of litigation related to Abilify®.
  • Hologic and Cynosure in defeating class certification and obtaining summary judgment in a purported class action regarding the efficacy of the SculpSure device.
  • Pfizer as coordinating science counsel, working with national counsel for the science defense, in securing two significant Daubert victories that led to a summary judgment ruling effectively ending the entire birth-defect multidistrict litigation for Zoloft®.
  • Pfizer, Pharmacia & Upjohn and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals as lead trial counsel in creating, coordinating and implementing the science defense for, and handling all phases of, litigation related to several hormone therapy products.
  • Sanofi as national counsel in product liability litigation involving the presence of the nitrosamine NDMA in the heartburn medication Zantac®.

Key Contacts

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  • The Legal 500 US
    Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Action: Consumer Products (Including Tobacco) (2023)
    Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Action: Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices — Defense (2023)
    Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Action: Toxic Tort — Defense (2023)
  • Chambers UK
    Life Sciences: Product Liability (UK-wide) (2023)
  • The Legal 500 UK
    Product Liability: Defendant (2023)
  • Chambers USA
    Product Liability & Mass Tort (Nationwide) (2022)
  • The American Lawyer
    Product Liability: Finalist – Practice of the Year (2019)
  • LMG Life Sciences Guide
    Product Liability: Tier 1 (2023)
    Non-IP Litigation: Product Liability (2012-2019)
    Non-IP Litigation: Product Liability & Recall (2019)