Mass Tort

personal injury trial, personal injury lawsuit with courtroom trail

Never afraid to take a personal injury case to trial. Some injured parties choose to pursue a mass tort lawsuit, pooling resources with other victims to maximize compensation for their losses. Unlike class action lawsuits, however, mass torts do not group plaintiffs together. Read on to learn more about other distinctions between the two, then contact the mass tort attorneys at Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC to get started.

What is Mass Tort?

While multiple parties are involved, cases in a mass tort remain separate. Each individual case is part of one legal action filed with a centralized federal court, called multidistrict litigation. Resources and information are often shared to help injured parties achieve the best results. 

Class action lawsuits also typically involve many victims who have suffered similar injuries. But this type of legal action involves just one lawsuit that is filed on behalf of the entire group. Once a verdict is reached, the awarded compensation is split among the group’s members.

What is the Process During a Mass Tort Lawsuit?

While each mass tort lawsuit is unique, most follow these general steps:

PHASE 1: Review Records

During this step, your mass tort attorney will assess your claim and dig into your medical records to learn more about your injury and its cause.

PHASE 2: Assess Injury Consistency

Next, our trial lawyers will check to see how your injuries compare to other plaintiffs’. These similarities will serve as key evidence for your mass tort lawsuit.

PHASE 3: File With the Federal Court 

Individual mass tort cases are consolidated to expedite the processing and information gathering processes.

PHASE 4: Determine Potential Outcome With Bellwether Trials 

A small group of mass tort lawsuits, selected from a larger pool of similar cases, are tried first.   The verdict is then used to help predict potential outcomes of other cases. 

PHASE 5: Secure a Settlement or Proceed to Trial

If both sides involved can reach a settlement, the case will not go to trial. But if negotiations do not yield a mutually agreeable settlement, your mass tort attorney will file a lawsuit and prepare for the courtroom.

Nationally Known Mass Tort Cases

• 3M Combat Arms Earplugs
• 3M Earplugs
• Asbestos
• Baby Food
• Elmiron
• Exactech
• Hernia Mesh
• Juul Vape Pens
• NEC Baby Formula
• Opioids
• Paragard
• Talcum Powder

Cases We Handle

Our experienced team of mass tort attorneys has handled a wide variety of cases, including the following:

Dangerous Products

Dangerous/defective products are some of the most common types of mass tort claims. When manufacturers fail to provide safe products, they must be held accountable. Product liability claims often involve manufacturing defects, design defects, or inadequate usage instructions or safety warnings. If resulting injuries occur on a large scale, a mass tort lawsuit may be filed to ensure victims recover the compensation they deserve.

Exposure To Toxic Substances

Mass toxic torts are one specific type that involves injury or illness caused by harmful exposure to chemicals or toxins. Whether contact occurred on the job, at home, or somewhere in between, if a dangerous product led to exposure, you may be eligible to file a mass toxic tort.

Man-Made Disasters

Some catastrophes are man made, like house fires or chemical plant exposures, and may cause hundreds of injuries. While each injury is different, the same party is responsible. That makes the disaster victims eligible for a mass tort lawsuit.

Natural Disasters

Similar to large-scale catastrophes, this type of mass tort claim involves natural disasters such as hurricanes or tornadoes that cause significant damages and injuries. These claims can be complex, since no entity is directly responsible for the disaster. However, insurance companies who fail to pay out claims following natural disasters can be held accountable through a mass tort lawsuit.

Defective Drugs & Medical Devices

These product liability claims are common, with medications or devices causing harmful side effects. Manufacturer errors or insufficient warnings may be to blame, but proving liability is often tricky. That’s where our national mass tort law firm comes into play, with our trial lawyers equipped to handle every aspect of your case – from your consultation to the courtroom.

Common Damages Recovered in Mass Tort Lawsuit

Injury victims may receive compensation for the following:

• Present and future medical bills
• Expense and mental anguish associated with revision surgery
• Lost income
• Pain and suffering
• Emotional distress
• Continued care (rehabilitation, therapy, in-home care)
• Loss of quality or enjoyment of life
• Loss of consortium
• Funeral and burial costs, if applicable

Understanding Mass Tort Lawsuits vs Class Action Lawsuits

While mistakenly used interchangeably on occasion, the terms “mass tort” and “class action” refer to different legal actions. Both involve multiple injured parties, with class action lawsuits grouping them together as a single entity. Mass tort lawsuits, on the other hand, keep each lawsuit separate. But due to the number of cases against one defendant, it is impractical to file each individually. Instead, a mass tort lawsuit is filed, with plaintiffs often sharing resources and information. Another key distinction to note is that the plaintiffs’ injuries in a mass tort lawsuit are not similar enough to qualify for a class action.

Understanding Mass Tort Cases vs Criminal Cases

A mass tort typically involves injuries caused by intentional harm or negligence. These lawsuits are civil cases against a defendant, as opposed to criminal cases filed by the government on behalf of the general public. Civil cases seek financial compensation for losses, while criminal cases pursue justice by punishing the defendant (fines, jail time, probation).

Tort law differs because it is commonly found in decades-old common law, instead of more recently updated statutes. Plus, the plaintiff in a civil case must only prove that a tort was committed using a preponderance of evidence. The prosecutor in a criminal case, however, must prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Common Factors That Impact a Mass Tort Case

Often more complex than a typical personal injury claim, a mass tort case involves many moving parts – and plaintiffs. Your case’s timeline may be impacted by the following factors:

Process of finding and deposing expert witnesses 
Necessary travel 
Investigation and evidence collection 

Once the preliminary stages are complete, these steps will be performed – each influencing your case’s timeline as well. 

• Filing of the complaint, documentation, etc.
• Additional investigations and fact-finding
• Discovery
• Motions
• Settlement negotiations
• Trial (including jury selection)
• Collection of settlement or award
• Appeals

If your claim settles outside of court, your case will resolve much more quickly than cases that proceed to trial. 

Statute of Limitation for Filing Class Action Lawsuit

Keep in mind that there is a limited amount of time to file a class action suit, varying from one state to the next. Find your state in the list below to find out the statute of limitations for personal injury claims. 

Alabama: 2 Years
Alabama Statutes Section 6-2-38

California: 2 Years
California Code of Civil Procedure Section 335.1

Georgia: 2 Years
Official Code of Georgia Annotated Section 9-3-33

Nevada: 2 Years
Nevada Revised Statutes Section 11.190(4)(e)

Tennessee: 1 Year
Tennessee Code Annotated Section 28-3-104(a)(1)(A)

Texas: 2 Years
Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Section 16.003

The statute of limitations also depends on the type of case, so be sure to contact Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC to ensure you do not miss the deadline. Our experienced legal team is here to help!

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Why Choose Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC to Manage Your Mass Tort Case?

Our national mass tort law firm has extensive experience handling cases like yours. We are proud to serve injury victims nationwide, offering the following:

• Top-notch investigators
• Thorough discovery process
• Highly regarded expert witnesses
• Detailed public records research
• Exhausted medical review
• Innovative tech and graphic support
• Intensive witness preparation
• Tried-and-true strategies (mock trials, focus groups, etc.)
• Careful jury selection
• Painstaking preparation for appeals

Practice Areas 

Trucking Accident
Traumatic Brain Injury
Spinal Cord Injury
Back & Neck Injury
Negligent Security Injury
Nursing Home Abuse

View All Our Practice Areas 

Meet Our National Trial Lawyers

Brett Turnbull
Alan Holcomb
Bobby LeMoine

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Areas We Serve 

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As National Personal Injury Lawyers, we have successfully won settlements and verdicts in courts throughout the U.S. in states such as California, Nevada, Montana, Arizona, Texas, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Illinois, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Michigan, and counting.

Licensed to practice in multiple states, our personal injury law firm is always ready to go to trial. 

Birmingham Office

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Atlanta Office

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Houston Office

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Accepting Attorney Referrals Nationwide

Our highly qualified trial lawyers have proven experience managing accident lawsuits across the country. Millions in referral fees back up our reputation for success – and have earned our fellow attorneys’ trust.

 Here at Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC, our team handles each case referral with the utmost care and attention. That is because we pride ourselves on exceeding the expectations of each referred client and associating attorney.

 With hundreds of millions of settlements and verdicts recovered, you can rest assured that your client is in the very best hands. 

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I believe I have been injured with other people as a result of negligence, what can I do next?

Contact a mass tort attorney as soon as possible. Here at Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC, our team can help assess you claim, starting with your free initial consultation.

Why should I join a mass tort lawsuit?

If you have been injured, it’s important to hold the at-fault party accountable. A successful lawsuit not only results in much-needed compensation for losses, but protects others from the liable party’s negligence or misconduct.

How do I know if my claim qualifies for a mass tort lawsuit?

If you suspect that your injury may qualify for a mass tort lawsuit, contact an attorney with experience handling cases like yours. Here at Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC, we offer free consultations – so you have nothing to lose!

How long does it take to settle a mass tort lawsuit?

Like many legal matters, there is no specific timeline for mass tort lawsuits. The time it takes to resolve your case may depend on several factors, like the complexity of the investigation, length of negotiations, and more.

What kind of damages can be awarded in a mass tort case?

You may be eligible for two types of damages: compensatory and punitive. Compensatory damages provide financial compensation for losses, such as medical bills and lost wages. Punitive damages are intended to punish the defendant and deter others from acting similarly.

What can I do to strengthen my case? 

To best position your case for success, keep the following in mind:

File your claim as quickly as possible, within your state’s statute of limitations
Disclose all information to your lawyer from the start
Create a communication schedule with your legal team
Follow all suggestions made by your lawyer

Why are so many medications dangerous and resulting in mass tort cases?

A medication may be deemed “dangerous” for any of these common reasons:

Drug company fails to conduct the studies required to identify possible risks that may arise after approval
Drug manufacturer does not provide adequate warnings regarding potential risks/side effects 
Marketing is not approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Since the 1970s, more than 30 dangerous drugs have been approved and then taken off the market due to the significant health risks they posed. Thousands of Americans have been injured or killed as a result. 

What if I was harmed by or experienced abnormal side effects from a medical device?

The medical device’s manufacturer owes patients a duty to provide safe, effective products. Failure to fulfill this obligation may result in serious injuries or death, so it is crucial to hold device companies accountable for their actions. If you believe you have a claim, contact Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC today.

Can medical records be retrieved in mass tort litigation?

Mass tort litigation requires the careful collection of evidence, including a high volume of medical records, charts, etc. Organization is key, especially with many patients’ records involved.

If I’ve experienced health complications from a dangerous drug, do I have a tort claim?

It is difficult to determine whether you have a valid claim without first learning more about your circumstances. Because complications can range in type and severity, it is best to contact an experienced mass tort attorney to determine eligibility.

Are there safety requirements for the generic brand drugs I take?

Generic drugs must have the same active ingredient, strength, dosage form, and route of administration as the original brand-name drug, as mandated by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). All manufacturing, packaging, and testing sites must also pass the same quality standards.

That said, the Supreme Court has established that generic drug manufacturers are not liable for any negative side effects that result – but the original drug’s manufacturer is. (See PLIVA, Inc. v. Mensing, 564 U.S. 604 and Mutual Pharmaceutical Co. v. Bartlett, 570 U.S. 2468.)

What are some dangerous drugs that resulted in lawsuits?

These dangerous drugs have resulted in mass tort cases in recent years:

• Actos
• Belviq
• Chantix
• Invokana (Canagliflozin)
• Fosamax
• Meridia
• Opioids
• Paxil
• Proton Pump Inhibitors (including Nexium, Prilosec, Prevacid, and other PPIs)
• Reglan
• Taxotere
• Topamax
• Trasylol
• YAZ or Yasmin
• Zofran

Can a tort be unintentional?

An unintentional tort occurs when an accident leads to financial loss, injury, or property damage. In these instances, the harm suffered was unintended and typically happened because the liable party was not being careful.

What skills should I look for when hiring a mass tort attorney?

It’s crucial to hire an experienced mass tort attorney who has a solid understanding of the subject matter at hand. Mass torts are typically more complicated than personal injury claims, requiring more time, resources, and knowledge. That’s why you must check reviews, education, and experience to be sure your attorney checks every box. It’s also important that you feel comfortable communicating openly with your mass tort attorney. Schedule your free consultation at Turnbull, Holcomb & LeMoine, PC today to ensure our team is a great fit!

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