Essure Cases Sent Back to Philadelphia for Litigation
Women involved in lawsuits over injuries allegedly sustained due to the contraceptive implant system, Essure, will now have their cases tried in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. The change of venue was recently determined by US District Judge John R. Padova of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. His ruling, that the state and federal courts did not have jurisdiction over the cases brought against the manufacturer of Essure, Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, has been boon to these women, since it is well-known that the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas offers a more plaintiff-friendly venue. Indeed, Bayer was eager to avoid exactly this situation when its legal team attempted to remove the original filings from Philadelphia to federal court.
Essure Manufacturer, Bayer, Sought to Remove Lawsuits to Federal Court
While Bayer and its lawyers cited as its reason the argument that plaintiff claims involved an interpretation of federal law, including Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations, commentators and plaintiffs’ attorneys familiar with the case and with Philadelphia’s reputation for plaintiff-friendly juries believe that these arguments were mostly strategic pretenses carrying little legal weight. Whether or not this is so, Judge Padova sent the cases back to Philadelphia for litigation.
In a statement, a Bayer spokeswoman said, “We are disappointed with the district court’s decision, as we continue to believe that a federal courtroom is the appropriate venue for these cases. This is a jurisdictional ruling and not a determination on the merits of the alleged claims, which are identical to those which have been dismissed entirely or in significant part by virtually every court to rule on them. Bayer will continue to defend against this litigation, and is confident in the strengths of its legal case regardless of the forum.”
Essure Contraceptive System May Have Lead to Severe and Permanent Injuries
The Essure system manufactured by Bayer uses tiny coils embedded in a woman’s fallopian tubes to permanently prevent pregnant. However, thousands of women who received the implants have filed lawsuits against Bayer asserting that the system caused serious and permanent damage to their bodies.
Over the past several years, the FDA has received numerous reports of organ perforations and ectopic pregnancies due to the presence of the Essure system.