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Cephalon Settles Whistleblower False Claims Act Suit Alleging Off-label marketing of Narcolepsy Drugs

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Teva Pharmaceutical Industries subsidiary Cephalon Inc. on Thursday settled a False Claims Act (FCA) lawsuit filed by a former sales representative who accused the drugmaker of pushing its narcolepsy drug Provigil for unapproved, off-label uses. Whistleblower Bruce Boise, who filed the original complaint against Cephalon in 2008, alleged that the company rewarded physicians who prescribed Provigil and another narcolepsy drug, Nuvigil, for uses not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), including attention deficit disorder, hyperactivity disorder, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, jet lag, and depression, according to Law360. A number of patients who had been prescribed the drugs ... Read More

First Xarelto side effects trial to begin next month

xarelto

The first bellwether trial in the massive multidistrict litigation against Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals and Bayer over bleeding risks with the blockbuster blood thinner Xarelto are scheduled to begin next month in April. The dates of the first few trials were pushed back twice – once because the date of the first trial, which is to be held in Louisiana’s Eastern District in New Orleans, coincided with the NBA All-Star game, and also bumped up too close to Mardi Gras. The second postponement came after agreement by both parties. The new schedule has the first bellwether beginning April 24, ... Read More

Court Revives Nursing Home Whistleblower Retaliation Claims

whistleblower retaliation

A federal appeals court has upheld a lower court’s dismissal of a nursing home employee’s False Claims Act (FCA) lawsuit under the first-to-file rule but has reinstated his claim that he was terminated in retaliation for speaking out against alleged billing fraud. According to Business Insurance, Patrick Gerard Carson sued Toledo, Ohio-based Manor Care Inc. on behalf of the U.S. government in September 2011, alleging that the company was fraudulently overcharging the federal Medicare program for patient care. Mr. Carson also claims that Manor Care terminated him in November 2009 in retaliation for his repeated complaints about the alleged fraudulent ... Read More

CA judge certifies class action against Costco, dietary supplement maker

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A California federal judge found grounds to certify a class action lawsuit alleging dietary supplement maker NBTY Inc. and Costco Wholesale Corp. misled consumers into thinking a ginkgo biloba supplement could improve mental alertness and memory. U.S. District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo certified the class of California residents who bought TruNature Ginkgo Bilboa with Vinpocetine, finding that the allegedly false statements the two companies made about the health benefits of the dietary supplement were enough to lure consumers into buying the products. Judge Bencivengo also noted that during the class period, Costco sold more than 1 million units of TruNature ... Read More

Resolution Repealing OSHA’s worker Injury Recordkeeping Requirements Passes House

Working on the Wall

A resolution that seeks to repeal an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) rule clarifying the responsibilities of large employers in the most dangerous industries to keep complete and accurate worker injury records has cleared the House and is now under review by the Senate. The OSHA clarifying rule under attack, writes Debbie Berkowitz, former chief of staff and senior OSHA adviser, “does not impose any new costs or obligations on employers, nor does it affect small businesses. The rule only covers larger employers in the most dangerous industries. This rule does not kill jobs, it prevents jobs from killing ... Read More

Admitting Guilt For Its Emissions Cheat Shows VW Lied, Investors Claim

VW consumer fraud

Volkswagen AG investors in a proposed class against the German automaker are seeking a partial summary judgment on certain claims involving the auto manufacturer’s emissions cheat, arguing the company acknowledged when it pleaded guilty to civil and criminal charges that it made false statements with intent to mislead. “Having accepted criminal liability for knowingly and fraudulently misrepresenting the ‘clean diesel’ vehicles’ ‘environmental friendliness,’ and emissions compliance, VW AG cannot credibly dispute that it misrepresented those same facts to investors, and did so with [full knowledge],” the investors claim, adding that “Discovery and further litigation on these undisputed points would be ... Read More

Idaho County Official Awarded $1.74 Million in Whistleblower Retaliation Suit

whistleblower retaliation

An Idaho jury has awarded a former Ada County, Idaho, official $1.74 million, concluding a four-year legal battle that began with a whistleblower complaint. According to the Idaho Statesman, Rich Wright, formerly a television journalist and Boise Police Department spokesman, became Ada County’s spokesman in 2006. He was promoted to lead the Department of Administration in 2008, but was fired in January 2015, one day after two newly elected county commissioners were sworn in. Mr. Wright filed a lawsuit against the county for $1.5 million, alleging he was fired in retaliation for ordering an investigation of harassment complaints from a ... Read More

National Kidney Month: Some medications linked to acute kidney injury

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March is National Kidney Month is an awareness campaign that should be important to people with type 2 diabetes. That is because diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, the last stage of kidney disease in which the kidneys fail to filter impurities from the blood, requiring kidney transplantation or dialysis. Many conditions, diseases and medicines can create situations that lead to acute and chronic kidney disease that can lead to kidney failure. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is usually caused by a long-term disease like diabetes or high blood pressure that slowly damages the kidneys and reduces function over ... Read More

Mazda, Mitsubishi Join Nissan In Seeking Compensation from Takata Over Airbag Recalls

Takata airbag - image source alexauto321, wikicommons

Mazda and Mitsubishi have asked a federal judge to order airbag maker Takata to reimburse them for costs they incur from lawsuits over the faulty Takata-made airbag inflators, which have been consolidated in a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in Miami. Pointing to indemnification clauses in their contracts with Takata, the Japanese automakers claim the auto supplier is required to reimburse them for any financial losses they will suffer as a result of the defective airbags. “As a direct consequence of Takata’s design, development, production and sale to Mitsubishi of the alleged defective inflators at issue in this action, [Mitsubishi] has already ... Read More

Analysis: ‘Judicial Hellhole’ designation motivated by big business, not accurate assessment of talc litigation

talc justice

Missouri Lawyers Weekly recently talked to Thomas Stewart, director of the trial advocacy program at Saint Louis University School of Law about his city’s reputation and tort reform in regard to the recent talc litigation. “So much of this tort reform business is based on the idea that you file your case in the city of St. Louis, and the jury automatically gives you money. Of course that’s nonsense,” Stewart said. “City judges and juries analyze on a case by case basis.” St. Louis drew the ire of tort reform groups last year, when three separate juries returned verdicts for plaintiffs ... Read More