Reich & Binstock partner on plaintiff settlement committee in Taxotere MDL

On behalf of Dennis Reich at Reich & Binstock LLP

The consolidated litigation involves cases alleging permanent hair loss from Taxotere chemotherapy drug.

ImageOur founding partner Dennis C. Reich is honored to have been appointed to the plaintiff settlement committee in Louisiana-based multidistrict litigation for injuries from the chemotherapy drug Taxotere. Attorney Reich has extensive experience in this type of mass tort litigation, having served on similar committees in a wide range of consolidated or class action litigation such as that involving alleged injuries from pharmaceuticals, oil spills, defective and dangerous products, antitrust violations, environmental harm, industrial accidents, consumer protection law violations and others

Taxotere MDL

We shared an article in November 2016 about the October consolidation of many individual federal lawsuits alleging alopecia - permanent hair loss - from the chemotherapy drug Taxotere, usually used intravenously to treat breast cancer. The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation joined the suits for the joint administration of pretrial proceedings in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

The court has created a website with links to ongoing court orders in the multidistrict litigation, known as MDL for short.

In the various individual suits, plaintiffs alleged that they did not get adequate warning of the possibility of permanent hair loss as a side effect before they decided to take Taxotere. Some also alleged that the medication was falsely marketed as more effective than other drugs used for the same purpose, even though the other choices did not carry the risk of alopecia.

Taxotere Plaintiff Settlement Committee

Judge Kurt D. Engelhardt in December appointed attorney Reich and other lawyers to be members of the plaintiff settlement committee, along with appointing members of a corresponding defendant settlement committee. He indicated that he selected the settlement committee members from applications from a "wide variety of highly competent counsel." Appointments run through January 1, 2018.

He tasked the settlement committees with the following goals:

  • Conduct ongoing, regular settlement negotiations.
  • Attempt to resolve all or some of the legal issues in the MDL before the cases involved advance to actual trials.
  • Try to establish "common understandings, potential ground rules, component parts and concepts, anticipated relief, necessary approvals, and ultimately financial details."
  • Have settlement discussions among the members of each committee, between the two committees and with the assigned Magistrate Judge.
  • Draft legal documents as required.

Having the two settlement committees focus exclusively on settlement negotiations sets the stage for progress to be made toward a potential settlement agreement without the committee members having the distraction of intensive trial preparation, which is the focus of other trial attorneys.

Anyone who has experienced permanent hair loss after taking Taxotere should seek legal counsel from a lawyer about what remedies are available such as a lawsuit, including consideration of the Louisiana MDL.

The lawyers at Reich & Binstock in Houston, Texas, represent clients in Texas and across the nation in a wide variety of personal injury matters, including individual, class action and multidistrict litigation.