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Opioid MDL in Ohio


Multidistrict litigation (MDL) allows courts to consolidate many similar cases into one action. This simplifies and speeds up the discovery and pretrial process, allowing the courts to avoid conflicting rulings, inconsistent pretrial obligations, and duplicate discovery. It also ensures consistency and accuracy of evidence, and allows plaintiffs to enjoy a more efficient process overall.

In December of 2017, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation allowed an MDL to be filed regarding the opioid crisis. Multiple plaintiffs filed claims against the distributors responsible for the drug, and the new MDL will be centered in Cleveland, Ohio. This is a central geographic location for the litigation, and is also home to the headquarters of one of the major opioid distributors being sued, Cardinal Health. U.S. District Judge Dan A. Polster will manage the case.

About the National Prescription Opiate Litigation, MDL #2804

This case has been filed by cities, counties, and states against pharmaceutical distributors and manufacturers. The defendants include Cardinal Health Inc., AmerisourceBergen Corp., and McKesson Corp., as well as others involved in the sale of opioid drugs. Individuals who have been injured by opioid prescriptions, as well as insurance companies, hospitals, consumers, and third-party payors, have also filed lawsuits in conjunction with the MDL action.

The plaintiffs are claiming that the defendants:

  1. Overstated the benefits and downplayed the risks of the opioid drugs
  2. Used aggressive marketing tactics to sell the opioid drugs
  3. Failed to monitor and investigate suspicious orders of the opioid drugs

Deceptive marketing practices and negligence regarding the distribution and sale of prescription opioids has led to widespread addiction. The plaintiffs claim that the pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors failed to comply with standards set forth by the Controlled Substances Act, as well as other state laws designed to regulate the sale of controlled substances. The defendants are also facing several other claims regarding violations of consumer protection laws and RICO statutes, negligence, public nuisance, fraud, and unjust enrichment. The pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors have made multi-billion dollar profits from the sale of opioid drugs in recent years. Meanwhile, it is estimated that more than half a million people have died from opioid overdoses since 2000.

The similar nature of the plaintiffs’ claims, as well as the benefits of centralization, have allowed these cases to be combined in a single MDL against the pharmaceutical companies responsible for opioid distribution and sale. All claims brought by various states, cities, counties, and individuals will be transferred to the Northern District of Ohio.

We Are Passionate About Holding Pharmaceutical Companies Responsible

At Bertram & Graf, L.L.C., our team of Kansas City dangerous drug attorneys have represented numerous clients who have suffered injuries from opioid prescriptions. We believe pharmaceutical companies should be held accountable for their deceptive marketing practices and negligent distribution of opioids. With so many people suffering addiction, it is imperative for victims to take a stand. We will diligently fight for your right to a settlement as you seek justice from those responsible.

Contact our office today to schedule a free initial case evaluation.