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I have dedicated my law practice for the last 25 years to the wrongfully injured and their families. The purpose of this blog is not to provide legal advice. If you need legal help you can contact me at or visit our website at Thank You

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

NJ Judge Dismisses 50 Vioxx Suits: "NJ Judge Dismisses 50 Vioxx Suits

The following article is a result of the decision of Judge Higbee dismissing claims on behalf of UK clients. It is expected that a similar ruling may also happen with respect to Canadian clients. The ruling does seek to protect foreign claimants concerning their right to seek compensation in their home countries and allows claims to be refiled should the defendant assert certain kinds of defenses such as stature limitations etc..

By PETER LOFTUS Dow Jones Newswires
� 2006 The Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA � A New Jersey judge has dismissed about 50 Vioxx-related lawsuits against Merck & Co. filed in state court by British citizens, saying the cases should be heard in Britain.
New Jersey Superior Court Judge Carol Higbee also ordered that Merck, of Whitehouse Station, N.J., must take steps to ensure that the plaintiffs can have their cases heard in British courts. If British courts decline to accept them, the drug maker must not prevent the suits from being refiled in New Jersey, the judge ordered.
Higbee's order, which was posted on the court's Web site Thursday, came in response to Merck's motion to dismiss the lawsuits filed by British citizens, arguing Britain was the appropriate forum for their complaints.
'We believe this is the correct ruling,' Ted Mayer, Merck's outside attorney for Vioxx litigation, said in a press release posted on Merck's Web site. 'It makes little sense to try these cases here in New Jersey.'
He added that British courts were more appropriate for the claims because the plaintiffs live in Britain, took Vioxx there, were treated there, and their medical records are in Britain.
A lawyer for the plaintiffs, James Pettit, couldn't be reached Friday.
Merck likely faces at least 22,000 U.S. lawsuits generally claiming the use of the painkiller Vioxx caused heart attacks or other cardiovascular events, and that Merck failed to properly warn of the drug's risks. Merck, which has denied those charges in trials, withdrew Vioxx from the market in September 2004 after a study showed it elevated the risk of cardiovascular events in people taking it for at least 18 months.
Some 14,675 of the Vioxx lawsuits have been"


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