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settlements 196 articles

Nursing home patients should be entitled to sue over abuse, neglect

Chrishelle Worley said she was joking when she sprayed cleaning solution into the eyes of the nursing home resident she was charged with caring for as a nursing aid. The 41-year-old man could not move or speak. Had it not been for an anonymous tip, no one would have ever known that the patient had been tortured. Worley, who pleaded guilty to patient abuse, worked at Park East Care and Rehab Center in Cleveland, Ohio. It was the same nursing home where a patient with a tracheotomy died after nursing staff twice neglected to suction out his breathing tube, federal ... Read More

NJ Advances Bill To Make Public Whistleblower Cases More Transparent

Spurred by a confidential $1.5 million whistleblower settlement in a case involving alleged criminal wrongdoing by supporters of Governor Chris Christie, New Jersey state lawmakers are pushing legislation that would bring transparency to any future whistleblower settlements involving state, county, and town authorities. New Jersey’s Assembly Judiciary Committee unanimously approved the measure after a protracted legal battle that cost state taxpayers $5.3 million ended in October with a settlement that bars whistleblower Ben Barlyn from disclosing details. Mr. Barlyn, former Hunterdon County prosecutor, filed the whistleblower complaint alleging he was wrongfully fired in retaliation for calling out the state’s dismissal of ... Read More

Whistleblowers Fired For Reporting Destruction of Environmental Records, California Lawsuit Alleges

The California agency charged with protecting the Bay Area from industrial air pollution faces a whistleblower retaliation lawsuit filed by two former employees who claim they were wrongfully terminated for trying to prevent sensitive records from being illegally destroyed. Plaintiffs Michael Bachmann and Sarah Steele filed the wrongful termination complaint against the Bay Area Quality Management District in state court. The pair worked in the agency’s Information Systems Services Division and were responsible for collecting, inventorying and digitizing more than half a century of physical documents ahead of the agency’s move to a new building in San Francisco. Mr. Bachmann, ... Read More

Group of dietary supplement sellers fined for making deceptive claims

Dietary supplement marketers who disguised radio infomercials as educational talk shows and used fake endorsements to sell pills to improve memory and relieve joint pain were ordered to pay $6.57 million to settle charges waged by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Maine’s attorney general. All but $556,000 of the $6.57 million was suspended due to the defendants’ financial condition, the FTC said. The FTC and Maine’s AG accused the defendants of violating the FTC Act, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, the Telemarketing Sales Rule and Maine’s Unfair Trade Practices Act. Defendants listed in the complaint include Ronald Jahner, Brazos ... Read More

Could results of 2017 Risperdal lawsuits prompt global J&J settlement?

Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals face more than 15,000 lawsuits over alleged disfiguring side effects caused by its antipsychotic drug Risperdal. The last case to be tried resulted in a $70 million verdict in favor of a young Tennessee boy. The next scheduled trial, which involved a New York boy who claimed he suffered serious Risperdal side effects, ended with a confidential settlement agreement early this year. Could that be a sign that the pharmaceutical giant is considering settling more cases? J&J says it is taking each case one-by-one to decide whether a settlement is in order. ... Read More

BlackRock Pays SEC Penalty For Silencing Whistleblowers With Employee Agreements

Asset management corporation BlackRock Inc. has agreed to pay a $340,000 penalty to settle allegations that it improperly used separation agreements to muzzle exiting employees, forcing them to forfeit their whistleblower rights and protections, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said Tuesday. The settlement makes BlackRock the latest in a series of companies that have settled similar allegations with the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower in recent months, ending the practice of silencing would-be whistleblowers by threatening separation agreement arrangements and severance payments. According to the SEC’s order, more than a thousand departing BlackRock employees signed separation agreements containing ... Read More

False Claims Act Cases Return $4.7 Billion To U.S. Taxpayers in 2016

False Claims Act lawsuits, much of which were initiated by whistleblowers, helped the U.S. government recover more than $4.7 billion in fiscal year 2016, the U.S Department of Justice (DOJ) said in a year-end review. The recoveries amounted to the third-largest return of federal funds to U.S. taxpayers in the history of the False Claims Act. The total False Claims Act recoveries in 2016 eclipsed the previous year’s recoveries totaling $3.6 billion and mark the fifth consecutive year that the government recovered more than $3.5 billion from False Claims Act complaints. “It’s the icing on the cake for an epic ... Read More

Cialis melanoma lawsuits added to Viagra MDL

The Daily Hornet reports that Cialis lawsuits have now been centralized in federal court along with the nearly 250 lawsuits against Viagra already in multidistrict litigation (MDL) under U.S. District Judge Richard Seeborg in the Northern District of California. Multidistrict litigation consolidates similar suits that have been filed in federal courts across the country to improve efficiency and allow lawyers to coordinate testimony, trials, and settlements. Both erectile dysfunction drugs are PDE5 inhibitors, which have been found by studies to increase risk of melanoma. The Daily Hornet explains how researchers, knowing that many melanomas naturally inhibit PDE5 and that those ... Read More

Man says he is scarred by Risperdal side effects

When Eddie Bible was a young teenager, he became a recluse. The stares and comments he got from his classmates was unbearable. “I had bigger boobs than the girls in school,” he said. “I thought, ‘Am I going to have to get a training bra?’” Bible, now 26, was prescribed the antipsychotic Risperdal in the early 2000s to treat anxiety and bipolar disorder. He didn’t know at the time that the medication was triggering his body to produce prolactin, the hormone that causes breast growth and lactation in pregnant women. “If I knew what the side effects would be of ... Read More

J&J pays big for Risperdal’s gynecomastia side effect

Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals face more than 13,000 lawsuits over claims that their antipsychotic drug Risperdal causes adolescent boys to grow large, disfiguring breasts. The sixth trial is currently underway and time will tell if jurors will hold the drug companies accountable. In February 2015, the first Risperdal side effects lawsuit went to trial. The jury awarded Austin Pledger, who was 20 at the time, $2.5 million after finding that Johnson & Johnson and Janssen didn’t adequately warn that the medication could cause boys and young men to grow female breasts, a condition known as gynecomastia. ... Read More