Friday, June 27, 2014

A $100 Million Funding -- Of The NuvaRing® Federal Litigation Settlement -- Draws Nigh

The very able federal District Court Judge Rodney W. Sippel, sitting in Missouri's Eastern Disctrict, has entered what are the nearly complete set of orders -- to establish the $100 million settlement funding, for this MDL. [Prior coverage, or at least some of mine, here, and here. But use the search box, upper left, for "NuvaRing®" -- to see the whole history, incuding patent litigation related to the line.]

As the below excerpt indicates, the plaintiffs' lawyers will share about $11 million in legal fees, and another $4.5 million will be allocated to pay expenses other than straight legal fees -- court reporters, copiers, medical experts and the like. And these counsel will have well-earned all of it. A great result for the plaintiffs -- and it resolves uncertainty in a fairly economical manner for Whitehouse Station. So it goes -- I'd guess someting like mid-September for requests for payment/claims notices to be in the mail -- to the NuvaRing claimants.

. . . .August 13, 2014 [is] the deadline for Organon to deposit the Settlement Funds into a Qualified Settlement Fund. The Court enters the following orders with respect to the implementation of the MSA and related matters. . . .

1. Plaintiffs' Liaison Counsel, Kristine Kraft, by June 30, 2014 shall submit to the Court and Defendants a proposed order that will create a Qualified Settlement Fund, a proposed Fund Administrator, and a proposed financial institution to hold and invest the funds, as well as proposed prudent investments of the funds pursuant to section 6.02 of the MSA. . . .

2. Pursuant to Amended Case Management Order No.3 (Doc. 1129) 11 % of the Settlement Funds shall be placed into a Common Benefit Fees Account and 4.5% shall be placed into a Common Benefit Expense Account allocated separately from the balance of the fund for the Claimants. . . .

We will -- as ever -- keep the readership informed, as to expected timing for payouts to individual claimants -- in this, the NuvaRing products liability litigation settlement.

I'll be off-grid, traveling on biz, for most of the day -- so please -- do be very tender with one another.

Many hundreds of the Merck colleagues, and fellow team members, in your various primary care sales organizations were told their careers have ended, as of yesterday, and their managers heard much the same, this very morning. In some districts, only one remains -- where there were 15 just three years ago.

Rough -- but managed care dictates that doctors have less influence than they had in the past, to force the 'scrip to be a high-priced branded version. That's just reality -- and the benefit to consumers is forcing a correlatively vast dislocation in pharma detailing/sales. So, be kind to one another.

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