Class Action Defense Cases—In re Medtronic: Judicial Panel On Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) Grants Joint Plaintiffs’ Motion To Centralize Class Action Litigation And Selects District of Minnesota as Transferee Court

Apr 16, 2008 | By: Michael J. Hassen

Judicial Panel Grants Plaintiffs’ Request for Pretrial Coordination of Class Action Lawsuits Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1407, but Decides on District of Minnesota as Transferee Court from among the Nine Districts Recommended by Various Parties

Twenty-seven individual and class action lawsuits, followed by 60 related “tag-along” individual and class action filings, were brought against Medtronic and others arising out of allegations that the implantation of Sprint Fidelis leads in defibrillators caused injuries. In re Medtronic, Inc., Sprint Fidelis Leads Prod. Liab. Litig., ___ F.Supp.2d ___ (Jud.Pan.Mult.Lit. February 21, 2008) [Slip Opn., at 1]. Plaintiffs’ lawyers in four of the class action cases filed a motion with the Judicial Panel for Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) requesting centralization of the litigation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1407; while no party opposed the motion, various parties alternatively argued over (9) districts as the appropriate transferee court. Id. The Judicial Panel granted the motion for pretrial coordination of the class action lawsuits, and selected the District of Minnesota as the transferee court because Medtronic is headquartered in that district so “relevant discovery may be found there” and because the district is “centrally located.” Id

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