Elmiron Eye Class Action Lawsuit Settlements

Elmiron is the brand name of a popular prescription drug manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals. Millions of people take Elmiron every day to treat chronic bladder conditions. Last year, however, a research study confirmed that prolonged use of Elmiron can cause serious damage to the retinas in the eyes. Studies have conclusively established that extended use of Elmiron at high doses has caused permanent blindness and impaired vision.

After the release of these findings linking Elmiron to eye damage, a steady stream of dangerous drug lawsuits has been filed against Janssen alleging vision loss or damage caused by Elmiron. To date, just over 100 individual Elmiron lawsuits have been filed in federal courts around the country. More of these bladder medication lawsuits have been filed in state courts.

Elmiron MDL Class Action Pending

The Elmiron cases in the federal courts are going to be consolidated into an MDL class action next month. A motion was filed with the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) requesting transfer and consolidation of all Elmiron lawsuits into an MDL class action. That motion is currently unopposed and is scheduled for a decision by the JPML on December 3rd. The presumed venue for the Elmiron MDL is the District of New Jersey or Pennsylvania. (May 2021 Update: New Jersey.)

Once the Elmiron class action MDL is created, all Elmiron lawsuits currently pending in federal courts and all future Elmiron cases will be consolidated together for pretrial discovery. Consolidation into a “class action” MDL is very common in mass tort cases involving defective drugs. The MDL facilitates the fact-gathering process during discovery. Instead of 100 separate discovery phases cases all over the country, there will be 1 single process of discovery in the Elmiron cases.

At the end of the consolidated discovery in the Elmiron MDL, the presiding judge will select a few “bellwether” cases for trial. These cases are then sent back to their original venues for jury trials. The results of these bellwether jury trials are then used to negotiate a global settlement of all the remaining Elmiron cases.

Why Do I Need an Expert in an Auto Accident Case?

All indications are that the Elmiron litigation will end in a settlement. There is no way to “know” this.

But it is what our lawyers believe. The scientific evidence linking Elmiron to vision damage is very strong. Past mass tort cases involving dangerous drugs have resulted in massive settlements based on much weaker medical evidence.

The Elmiron class action MDL will almost invariably end in a settlement, the only question is how much and what will the Elmiron settlement arrangement look like. Global settlements in mass tort cases usually involve a structured payout arrangement with individual lawsuits are ranked in tiers.  Elmiron lawsuits in the highest tier get a higher settlement payout and cases in the lower tier get the lowest payout. Ranking in tiers is based on the severity of the plaintiff’s injuries.

For example, a plaintiff with 100% vision loss would be in the highest tier and a plaintiff with only partial vision impairment would be in the lowest tier.

How Do You Know if Elmiron Damaged Your Vision?

Research has conclusively linked Elmiron use to a very specific type of eye damage that is ONLY known to be caused by the active ingredient in Elmiron (pentosan polysulfate sodium). The unique type of eye damage caused by Elmiron is called pigmentary maculopathy. Anyone who has been on Elmiron for 1 year or longer should have their eyes examined for signs of damage to the retinas. The eye damage linked to Elmiron is often misdiagnosed as age-related macular deterioration, so make sure to tell your eye doctor about your history of Elmiron use.

How Much Compensation Can You Expect to Get for an Elmiron Lawsuit?

Based on settlements in prior mass tort drug cases, we are anticipating the following Elmiron settlement amounts:

Vision Impairment Level Settlement Range
80% – 100% $750,000 – $1,000,000
40% – 80% $350,000 – $700,000
20% – 40% $75,000 – $200,000
Under 20% $25,000 – $50,000

These numbers are utter speculation.  So why am I posting estimated settlement numbers that are nothing more than a guess?  Victims understandably want to know what lawyers who have looked at these Almiron cases think about their settlement value.  Could I be 1000% wrong?  Of course I could.

How Long Will an Elmiron Settlement Take?

A final settlement in the Elmiron class action MDL will probably take a year or two. But, like everything else, this could get delayed by COVID-19 related shutdowns. Global settlements in most big defective drug cases take time. If a lawyer tells you she will get you a quick Elmiron settlement, run the other way. The pre-trial discovery is massive and takes time to get done. Discovery is typically followed by at least one bellwether trial that can lead to months of back-and-forth negotiation.

The Elmiron litigation could potentially move faster than other defective drug cases simply because the scientific evidence against Elmiron appears to be so strong. The evidence linking Elmiron to macular eye damage is much stronger than evidence in other mass tort drug cases.

The problem, however, is that the COVID-10 pandemic has slowed everything down in the court system. This could make a quick Elmiron settlement much harder.

Elmiron Class Action Lawyers

My firm, Miller & Zois, is currently accepting new Elmiron cases from individuals who have been diagnosed with Elmiron-related eye damage.  We are working with a team of lawyers on these cases. Contact our Elmiron class actions lawyers today to get your case started.

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