fatal litigation

by:Keyuan     2020-06-14
Fortune magazine)
-It usually starts slowly, almost unconsciously, with the first faint wind that signals the coming storm.
Somewhere in the United States, a plaintiff\'s lawyer filed a lawsuit claiming that a familiar and widely used product had hurt his client.
Then, elsewhere, the second plaintiff\'s counsel filed similar proceedings.
The third is submitted, and then the fourth, until there are dozens of parallel \"infringement\" claims across the country, all making the same allegations against the same product.
However, as long as these are still separate suits in various jurisdictions that crawl at their own pace, they do not necessarily pose a fatal threat to the manufacturer of the product.
They don\'t have a wider background, they don\'t have a bigger meaning.
That is to say, none of the plaintiff\'s lawyers across the country yet believe that in these cases ---
Or rather, in the accumulation of these cases ---
This is a huge opportunity to shut down a company and kill people in the process.
So, Houston lawyer Richard matov recalled his first case against the manufacturer of silicone breast augmentation, the product at 30-
And they have been in the market for years.
It was 18 years ago when Mithoff was a young partner of legendary plaintiff lawyer Joe Jamail.
His client underwent a series of operations after her implant was cracked, and Mithoff is suing manufacturer Dow Corning.
Mithoff did not claim that the silicone gel in the implant caused \"automatic\"Immune disease;
It will take a few more years for this terrible charge.
He simply said that the rupture and subsequent surgery caused pain to his client and she should be compensated.
The jury awarded her $170,000.
\"As early as 1977, we thought $170,000 was a lot of money,\" Mithoff said . \".
Then he began to laugh.
11 years later, when the wind got quite big, Rick Laminack took his breasts for the first time --implant client.
Laminack is also a young Houston lawyer who works for Texas legend John O\'Quinn, a notable success figure;
He also had no feelings about the storm brewing. -
Or his own role in the future.
\"One day, a woman came to our office with a dozen letters from a jar with two cracked implants and other lawyers, rejecting her,\" Laminack recalls . \".
\"Because she was a friend of a friend, I was persuaded to take her case.
So we sued the plastic surgeon, and we sued the manufacturer afterwards. -
Subsidiaries of Bristol
Miles, a giant pharmaceutical company.
He shrugged his shoulders, almost ignoring himself, with an evil smile.
\"That\'s what we do.
\"Today, seven years after Laminack took his first case, no one can doubt that the storm came with anger.
Not just dozens of breasts.
There have been thousands of implant lawsuits. -
No, tens of thousands.
It has become one of the most terrible wave of large-scale litigation in the history of American business.
Mithoff\'s first goal, Dow Corning, has been wasted by the lawsuit because it is simply impossible to try to defend itself in so many lawsuits.
Its torture is not over yet.
The plaintiff\'s lawyer who pushed it to the bankruptcy court is now trying to move in for murder;
They talked boldly about taking over the company altogether.
The first goal of Laminack, now known as Bristol
Miles shiguibao has been begging for mercy for most of the past three years, resolving the case when it comes up, and offering to pay huge sums of money to get rid of the lawsuit.
Two other major defendants, Baxter Healthcare and 3 m, have also been trying to resolve the proceedings, but none of them have been successful.
The defendant provided more than $4 billion to the plaintiff in total.
$4 billion is not even enough.
Litigation typhoons like this have been called \"mass infringement\" and there are no more terrible phrases in corporate law.
As we all know, and to a large extent accepted, companies usually make business judgments to resolve worthless litigation, simply complete with them.
Mass infringement is the ultimate abuse of this idea.
The dynamic of mass infringement requires companies to try to solve legal problems-
No matter what the advantages are-
If they want to keep doing business.
The number of lawsuits, their heavy burden, is the reason for the company to give in.
This is no exaggeration;
Just ask any of the major asbestos defendants and almost every one has been evaporated by the lawsuit.
Or ask Baltimore\'s lawyer, Peter Angelos, who ate a big meal about the asbestos case and became rich enough to buy syndicate of Orioles for $0. 173 billion.
Over the past decade, with the scale, scope and boldness of mass infringement, they have become a beast that needs to be fed regularly.
A growing number of plaintiffs\' lawyers have begun to see mass infringement as an important part of their business, and they are no longer willing to wait for such cases to take place at their doorstep.
There are many lawyers now. -
A lawyer\'s collective pocket is deeper than the company they sue for, and if a company can\'t meet their demands, they won\'t push it to bankruptcy in two blink of an eye ---
They are actively looking for products and they can build a massive infringement.
Breast augmentation today.
Tomorrow will be Norplant\'s contraceptive device.
It will be another thing the next day.
If the evidence of harm to the product basically does not exist?
Very little protection is provided.
The most amazing facts about breasts
The implantation of mass infringement is like this: no peer has published it yet
Supporting the review of the central allegations behind the proceedings-
Breast augmentation with silicone can cause disease
This is not the evidence required by the plaintiff\'s counsel, but the numbers.
This is the brutal calculation behind mass infringement.
How can the plaintiffs claim billions of dollars in damages without proof that what they claim is true?
How did such a storm come about?
How can companies be destroyed when lawyers harvest millions of dollars?
What is the logic of these unnatural disasters?
The answer to these questions is the extraordinary experience of Dow Corning, the emergence of mass infringement.
It is true that Dow Corning did not play its strength.
But in fact, once the plaintiff bar saw the company, it never had a chance.
The real believer once a group of ordinary lawsuits evolved into a massive infringement, it was the big boy who hosted the show ---the high-
Pricing lawyers with their resources and staying power and the ability to gather thousands of clients who will provide them with leverage.
But at first, when only one sick customer was convinced that the company\'s product had caused her illness, the big boy tended to stay away.
The first attempt to build complex products is too risky --
Liability cases, especially those aimed at proving the link between popular drugs or medical devices and the disease.
First of all, at this early stage, it was the company who played Gloria to the plaintiff\'s David. -
Throwing legal barricades and deploying a team of lawyers will usually do their best to grind down from the other side.
There are also serious financial risks for the plaintiff\'s lawyer.
After all, he took legal costs. -
These costs can easily reach tens of thousands of dollars. -
There is no guarantee of salary at the end of the road.
In fact, one of the company\'s main strategies to try to quell such proceedings was to try to beat the plaintiff before his lawyer went bankrupt.
The kind of lawyer who is willing to deal with such cases in the virgin state is often a true believer, a fanatic who carries out the task.
He is completely convinced that his client has been badly hurt by a ruthless company, he is out of justice and the financial risk is damn.
If he has no evidence yet, then, in his view, it is only a matter of time.
After all, evidence of. H.
The problem with Robins on the Dalkon Shield intrauterine device was not fully handed over to the plaintiff.
It was such a case that supported the true believer and inspired his imagination.
He rarely realized that he had laid the foundation for mass infringement.
But that\'s what he did. In the breast-
The most real believer in the implant lawsuit is a San Francisco lawyer named Dan Bolton.
He said firmly: \"There is no doubt that, in my opinion, silicone breast augmentation will lead to automaticimmune disease.
\"He is very sincere in believing that breast implants will have a terrible effect ---
The silicone gel in the implant somehow causes the female immune system to collapse, leading to this classic automatic from joint pain and fatigue
Immune system diseases such as lupus and hard swelling.
A series of recent studies have led him to serious doubts about the theory.
Like many lawyers in their breasts.
Anecdotal evidence that he thinks his client-
After all, they have breast implants and they have automated breast implants.
An immune disease of one kind or another-
More convincing than any scientific research.
He believes Dow Corning has produced and sold a product that it knows could cause this problem, and that is even more determined.
\"Dan Bolton hates Dow Corning,\" said a defense lawyer.
\"Like all the other lawyers in the early days, Bolton fell into his first breast --
Implant cases are more or less accidental.
On 1982, a woman named Maria Stern walked into a small plaintiff company in San Francisco complaining that the implant had broken.
She also suffers from chronic fatigue and joint pain.
Her doctor was unable to determine the cause of her symptoms and they told her that the leakage of silicone gel into her body could be the source of the problem.
Although there is no scientific literature to support the theory, her doctor thinks it is at least possible.
Stern wanted to sue Dow Corning, which made her implants, not just to make defective products, but to sell her something that made her sick.
No one has filed the charge before. -
At least not in litigation. -
The lawyer she went to see immediately understood the inherent difficulties of hearing such cases.
Still, he took Stern as a client and threw the case to Bolton, who he recently hired from law school.
Although he didn\'t realize this at first, Bolton has two big advantages in shooting for this special product.
The first problem is that, although the silicone breast implants were implanted into the human body, as with all the medical equipment at the time, it was only loosely regulated.
Although they have been on the market since 1964, they have never experienced the pain of the new drugs requested by the Food and Drug Administration before they went public.
To be frank, Bolton\'s second advantage is that he will play Dow Corning.
Dow Chemical and Corning Corporation was established in 1943 (
Later called Corning Glass Factory)-
Still its only shareholder. -
Its only mission is to find new applications for silicone, which comes from silicon and is one of the most useful substances ever.
It has achieved great success, creating $2.
By 1994, the annual sales volume was 2 billion, and about 8,700 silicone products were produced. Its medical-
The equipment Department alone produces all the products from the pacemaker components to the diversion used to relieve water in the brain. (
Breast implants occupy a small, not particularly profitable corner of the company. )
Over time, the company culture instilled a near childlike awe of the silicone miracle in its employees.
Perhaps because it only needs to report to two compassionate shareholders, it is an isolated, even naive company.
It is located in Midland, Michigan, and its headquarters is packed with pleasant Midwest people who have never faced the threat of ongoing litigation, not to mention a bad publicity.
At this point, it is in common with it
Founders and neighbors, the larger Dow Chemical Company, have become tougher over the years by reaching out to both.
Dow Corning is innocent in a dangerous world.
This may never be better stated than when Bolton finally got the court\'s consent ---
After a long struggle with the company\'s lawyers-
He asked for access to Dow Corning and search for documents.
For a lawyer with a theory that he cannot prove, this \"discovery\" stage of the proceedings may be a crucial fishing adventure.
On 1984, the court ordered Bolton to be allowed access to certain documents, and Dow Corning actually bought him a ticket ---
First class, many--
Paid for the hotel room.
Dan Bolton found his case that week.
Until today, when Bolton realized what a big treasure trove Dow Corning had opened for him, he remembered how excited he was.
Dow Corning, which has been producing silicone breast implants for 20 years, has collected thousands of memos related to all aspects of the product ---
Including the question of whether the gel causes an immune response.
Many of these memos are written in words that borders on inflammatory things.
For example, Bolton found a memo of 1983, summarizing: \"As a product steward. . .
I must strongly urge the Bill group to approve the design and do the necessary work to verify that these gels are safe. . .
Only reasoning data to confirm the long term
These gels are used for long-term safety in human implant applications.
Another memo of 1983 said, \"however, as far as I know, what I want to emphasize is that we do not have a valid long-term
Long-term implant data confirming long-term safety of gel
Terminology for implant use.
These are classic smoking for Boltongun-type documents. I was amazed.
\"He also stumbled upon a heated controversy within the company over more than 1970 years about a side effect known as\" contract contraction ---
The tissue around the implant will harden-
And \"bleeding \".
\"Gel bleeding is a well-known phenomenon among plastic surgeons in which a small amount of gel escapes through the implant shell.
The reason for this argument is that some plastic surgeons believe that Dow Corning implants are bleeding too much and cause unacceptable high contracture shrinkage, thus stopping the purchase of implants from the company.
Sales staff were upset about the loss of business and the internal memo they wrote to their superiors
Ups has provided more ammunition to Bolton.
\"Several of our clients,\" wrote the author of the most damn memo, \"asked me what we were doing.
I assured them with crossed fingers that Dow Corning is also working on a \"contract contraction/gel migration\" study.
This is clearly satisfactory to them for the time being, but one day they will ask us about our findings.
Bolton is very happy.
\"With all our gadgets, we feel like Santa Claus,\" he recalls now . \".
\"We are very, very happy to be back on this case.
\"As Dow Corning later did, one might argue that these documents represent an ongoing internal debate for every scientist concerned about the effects of implantation on the immune system, others also believe in their safety.
People can provide all sorts of innocent explanations of what is in the document.
One can point out that when the \"Dow Jones Document \"(
Because they knew it later)
The safety of breast implants is not entirely at ease and they do not show insecurity.
On the central issue of litigation ---
Does silicone breast augmentation cause immune response in women? --
They were silent.
What Bolton understands, however, is that none of this matters.
In the hands of a good plaintiff\'s lawyer, the 800-page document he brought back will make Dow Corning appear negligent, while covering up the fact that the center\'s allegations have not yet been confirmed.
Combined with the other elements he proposed-an ex-
Agree to testify against Dow Corning employees;
He found some \"experts\" who were willing to infer that silicone would affect the immune system;
Stern himself may well have caused sympathy in the jury. -
The Dow document gave Bolton the upper hand.
Even Dow Corning saw this;
In the spring of 1985, it offered a settlement just before the trial began. Bolton said no.
In July, when the jury awarded Maria Stern $1, his bet was rewarded. 7 million. Of that, $1.
5 million is punitive damages, which means that the jury thinks Dow Corning has done something bad that should be severely punished. (
The company and stern settled the case in less time during the appeal, a very common result. )
Bolton has made this clear: you can charge in court that silicone breast augmentation has caused the disease and you can win a lot of money.
Still, Bolton\'s surprise was that the harsh verdict did not cause much of a stir.
Legally, this is equivalent to a tree falling into the forest: Does it really make noise if no one hears it?
After the trial, the court ordered Bolton to return Dow Corning\'s documents to Dow Corning and banned him from talking about the contents.
In the plaintiffs\' column, it was considered that these cases were difficult and, despite their severity, the remuneration was not particularly high.
This is because so many rulings are punitive damages that are often cut or canceled on appeal.
For any complex lawsuit, to develop into a mass infringement, more is needed in addition to one or two victories against a company.
There must be an atmosphere of fear around the product, and a group of angry users want the company to suffer when they suffer.
Once a stampede is imminent for a potential claimant, the grand jury\'s decision can be activated.
That\'s why Bolton\'s second big breast is as important as the stern case.
This is especially true in implant trials six years later.
The facts are not particularly different,
Bolton\'s new client is a woman named Marianne Hopkins whose implants are broken, her joints are painful, her fatigue, and her history of weight loss.
Bolton tried the case in almost the same way as he tried the stern case, relying on the Dow document (
He got it from Dow Corning.
His \"experts\" and so on.
But the background is different.
It changed everything.
By that time, propaganda became louder as reporters began to accept allegations of breast implants causing diseases.
TV magazine programs are powerful disseminators of product fear;
Until today, everyone on both sides of the breast --
The implant lawsuit remembers the broadcast of Coney Zhong\'s breast in the late 1990 s.
Implant charges
The show produced a huge chain reaction as women with implants began to set up support groups, share information and vent their anger at breast implants manufacturers.
This is a very emotional question. -
Why not? --
There are also instances where women with implants panicked when they heard the allegations.
In a notorious case, a woman tried to cut her implant open with a razor.
Meanwhile, Sidney Wolf, who is in charge of the Ralph Nader health research team, called out for a ban on breast implants and sold the litigation documents to the plaintiff\'s counsel for $750.
In addition to this unstable mix, there is also a factor, perhaps the most critical factor in creating an atmosphere for this mass infringement: the federal government is starting to crack down on breast implants.
Finally, it is concluded that implants need to be strictly regulated and FDA is applying them the same strict standards as drugs.
The process was not going well for Dow Corning because it did not do enough scientific research.
FDA Commissioner David Kessler doesn\'t seem to be in the mood to cut any slack on the company;
According to FDA sources, he has been pushing FDA staff to complete breast tests
Implant investigation is fast.
On November 1991, a scientific team convened by the FDA held a well-known Hearing on breast augmentation, which turned into a controversial and highly charged incident.
Although the panel finally concluded that the implant should remain on the market, it had hardly noticed its decision.
By then, a jury at Hopkins University had delivered a verdict. In mid-
On December 1991, the jury ruled that Mariann Hopkins was not $1.
7 million Maria Stern is only $7.
34 million, of which $6.
5 million is punitive damages.
Suddenly, there was no rare opportunity for the plaintiff\'s lawyer to not understand breast augmentation surgery in the country.
Dan Bolton has the last card to play.
Angry at Dow Corning\'s insistence that breast implants is safe, he decided to show Kessler the Dow documents.
He violated the court\'s order to keep them secret and managed to send them to Kessler, who was reportedly shocked.
On January 6, 1992, the FDA commissioner claimed that the information contained in these documents \"increased our concerns about [safety]implants]
\"Announced the temporary suspension of use (
Strangely, however, he says the drugs can still be used in women who need them for reconstruction surgery after breast cancer surgery).
\"It is our responsibility to let the American people ensure that these issues are thoroughly investigated,\" he added . \".
In a society that doesn\'t like litigation very much, government officials can say out loud that medical equipment needs further research and that\'s what\'s going to happen: there will be further research.
Instead, Kessler called for a moratorium on implantation as a spark that eventually ignited the fire.
In a few weeks, 100 lawsuits became 1,000.
The stampede has begun.
Among the few people who immediately understood the huge impact of Kessler\'s decision on Dow Corning, two were particularly prominent.
One of them is Keith McKennon, former president of Dow Chemical. S. A.
In his career, McCain has become the focus of Dow chemistry for several mass violations;
He also served on Dow Corning\'s board of directors.
So macenon is the most logical person to see the small company through the crisis.
On the occasion of his retirement, macenon was suffering from cancer, but he was loyal to the two companies and reluctantly agreed to become the CEO of Dow Corning.
His term began a month after the suspension.
The second person is a good man.
Stanley Chesley, a famous lawyer in Cincinnati
The time infringement suit made him both rich and notorious.
Three weeks after Kessler issued a statement, Chesley filed a document with the United States in his hometown. S.
District Judge Carl Rubin asked him to prove the breast
Implanted receptor (
And their husband! )as a \"class.
Turn major infringement casesaction suits--
He basically took control of the proceedings as the class\'s chief counsel, which almost guaranteed his millions of dollars in fees after the proceedings were resolved ---
How Stan Chesley made a living
Created by Congress Act, class
The lawsuit was originally intended to enable a large number of people to correct \"injuries\" that are essentially similar, such as price manipulation or violation of civil rights.
However, Chesley was the first person to adapt to the class.
Bring a lawsuit against complex infringement cases;
Later, a legal publication wrote that he did so \"radically changing the law of tort.
\"In the Chesley class action, the loss of money can be huge, and the harm suffered by the\" class \"victims is often not similar.
The latter is a particularly important point of view as it allows Chesley and the rest of the class
Follow his expert in action, create--Then solve--
The mass infringement included two plaintiffs, who were very ill and restricted to wheelchairs, who had very little symptoms and could hardly be detected.
For Chesley, on 1977, when a fire broke out at a dinner club in Kentucky, killing 165 people, the light bulb lit. He agreed with Judge Rubin\'s request that all plaintiffs be declared grade.
He now said: \"While I was initially opposed to grade certification, it turned out to be a very effective device.
Because the club has very little insurance. -
Because its records are destroyed, it is impossible to know who made the aluminum wire that could cause a fire-
Other lawyers think the case is a loser.
But Chesley designed a theory that it is the responsibility of all aluminum wire manufacturers to make defective products, so it doesn\'t matter who\'s wire is in the dinner club.
Chesley\'s theory produced an astonishing 1,100 defendants, most of whom had nothing to do with the fire.
But because the victim was declared-
So these companies face only one lawsuit, not hundreds of times. -
Many people find it easier to settle than to fight.
Chesley eventually created a $50 million settlement, of which about $6 million was his company.
Since then, turn the cataclysm into class
Litigation, which then resolves these issues before trial, becomes the preferred method for Chesley.
Although they had never met before, McCann and Chesley returned far away. Like battle-
On the other side of a war, tough generals retreated in previous mass violations.
In fact, in their intertwined history, people can find the seeds of the masses --
In 1983, their first battle was infringement, all of which began with the Agent Orange case.
Looking back now, what is surprising about Agent Orange\'s class action is that all the important precedents it sets seem to be accidental.
It was never the instigator of all subsequent mass violations;
Instead, it should stop large-scale litigation.
For example, the decision to prove a class of Vietnamese veterans ---
You will remember who claimed that they were sick of fallen leaves during the war ---
It\'s an amazing precedent.
If Chesley\'s disaster case expands the definition of collective action, this distorts the definition of collective action ---
Opened up a whole new field for plaintiff lawyers who had never been able to attend classes before
For people with this different symptom, and even for those who claim that the product causes the disease, the state of action.
However, Jack, the judge who ruled the case.
Weinstein\'s motivation is partly for the most mundane reasons.
He was concerned that if he did not allow classes, the Orange Agent\'s case would have blocked the court for years like the asbestos case, and that the asbestos case had never reached a first-class level
Became a black hole in the American legal system.
Weinstein strong
Both the plaintiff and the company that made Agent Orange had weapons. -
Which is mainly Dow chemistry--
Reconciliation negotiations began.
His motives are once again secular.
If the two companies had a death duel with the plaintiff, his court would have been put on hold for years.
However, it is surprising that, despite his public belief that the orange agent veteran is in poor condition, he is still pushing for reconciliation.
In fact, to show how weak he thinks it is-
In order not to let the plaintiff escape from the settlement process-
He immediately threw away several cases brought by lawyers whose clients had \"opted out\" of their own personal suit.
He ruled that there was no evidence of cause and effect. -
That is, in his judgment they failed to prove the connection between the Agent Orange and their disease.
All of this is magiavari and works well.
In the end, the defendant paid $0. 18 billion to resolve the proceedings and in return, the plaintiff agreed that no veteran would be able to file another Orange Agent action.
It was a real breakthrough: Although there was no conclusive evidence that Agent Orange caused the disease, the companies paid millions of dollars to the plaintiffs.
What does McCain think of this amazing settlement?
Actually, he thinks it\'s okay.
Like everyone else, he missed the bigger picture.
It\'s simple for him: Dow Chemical faces potentially billions
The dollar liability, erased the lawsuit with little scratch on its balance sheet.
He shrugged his shoulders, \"the cruel reality is that you end up paying some money if there\'s a lot of litigation.
\"Instead, it was the plaintiff\'s lawyer who was angry.
They charge their clients a fee, a settlement that completely shortens their clients;
The most veterans can collect--
Disability anyway--
Only $12,000.
This also shortens the term of office of counsel, as Weinstein allows the plaintiff\'s counsel to bring only seven.
5% of the settlements, not 30% to 40% of the settlements they normally command. (
The judge did this again in order to prevent future mass litigation. )
Counsel for the plaintiff knew clearly who to blame: Chesley, who was invited to the proceedings to negotiate a settlement exclusively.
As you can see from Agent Orange case, when Stan Chesley controls a class --
In the lawsuit, he will negotiate a quick solution to sell everyone\'s customers downstream while ensuring that he gets a generous fee. (
Agent Orange of Chesley\'s company won the award.
Less than a year\'s work cost $525,000. )
Over the years, other lawyers have called him an \"economic broker\" and also called him \"the ultimate weird, exaggerated distortion of what it means to be a lawyer \".
Chesley said his critics were jealous of him, but even his own description of what he did made him sound more like a broker than a lawyer.
He boasted: \"You must make up your mind in this business --oriented.
Companies involved in mass infringement are seeking solutions.
He also talked about the need to \"give and accept\" in the public.
Like any other type of business negotiation, infringement negotiation.
Does the company know what Chesley is doing?
Of course, they do, which is why they tend to be willing to negotiate from the beginning if they see him sitting at the table.
After all, they do want to solve the problem, and so do Wall Street. when tough litigation is resolved, Wall Street tends to push up the company\'s shares even if it costs hundreds of millions of dollars.
More often than not, his plaintiff lawyer, Chesley, started the war.
These lawyers consider themselves trial lawyers, not first-class lawyers.
Litigation experts believe that it is not their problem that companies need to \"resolve\" litigation at all.
They want a separate trial and they are very concerned about blocking the court system.
For them, the implicit Chesley exchange-
In return for a huge but non-recurring amount of money. -is anathema.
So is Chesley himself.
When McKinnon arrived in early 1992, Dow Corning was shocked.
Its employees felt besieged and squatted in their isolated headquarters, suffering and paralyzed by litigation.
McKennon\'s first business was to erase the bunker mentality.
He made a conciliatory gesture to the media.
Even at the height of the battle of orange agent, McKenzie has been sympathetic to veterans who believe orange agent has made them sick.
McKennon knew that women with breast implants had the same belief that he wanted the company to admit that their anger was real.
His first move was to get Dow Corning out of his breast completely.
The implant business has frustrated many Dow Corning employees, who see it as an implicit guilt.
But McKenzie knows that if it\'s just a signal to women that it\'s not a caring company, it has to be done.
He also hired a scientist named Ralph Cook from Dow Chemical and accused him of doing what Dow Corning should have done years ago.
Cook was given the task of using Dow Corning\'s funds to build a broad and complex epidemiology, which is required if medical questions around silicone breast implants are to be answered.
\"I publicly say that we are willing to go wherever science brings us.
I mean it, \"said McKenzie.
\"If my assessment is flawed,\" he added sadly, \"it is not realized that no matter how clear the science is, the other party will not believe it.
In the end, Dow Corning began to hire a large number of lawyers.
Infringement experience including animation, cigar
Washington lawyer Kenneth Van Berg gritted his teeth. he was a special master of Weinstein\'s orange agent case and has since started a career in large-scale infringement negotiations.
The demand for the professional services of Fanberg is like this, and when he is involved in a case, he needs about $200,000 a monthwith a seven-
Digital Bonus if there is settlement.
Needless to say, this has given Van Berg a strong interest in the \"solution\", just as he negotiated half of the time with Chesley --
More than a dozen mass violations
Although the two were sitting on the other side of the table, they praised each other ---
\"Stan Chesley is a genius in what he does,\" Van Berg said . \"-
It is suspected that, like the enemy\'s fighter pilots, they prefer the company of each other rather than the people in their own camp.
McKenzie hopes the two men can use their special magic to resolve the lawsuit quickly.
However, what McCann missed was the hard feelings other lawyers had for Chesley.
Many of Mr. Chesley\'s enemies at the plaintiff\'s bar simply could not have allowed him to monopolize the market --
Implant Litigation
Even if Judge Rubin proved the rank of Chesley, the trial lawyers began lobbying for Rubin to take the case away, thinking that Rubin was an ally of Chesley.
It quickly became a civil war between trial lawyers and classes. action lawyers;
There is a part of the mass infringement of the lawyer\'s meeting is always degraded into a quarrel between relatives.
Chesley and
Chesley faction
In the end, the federal class action was taken from Rubin, mainly because of the resistance of the trial lawyer.
In this country, there are so many large lawsuits now that there is a federal bench panel that does nothing but decide whether a particular set of similar cases has become so clumsy to merge in a single court.
This is the so-called \"more
District Action \"panel or MDL.
Because there are thousands of breasts now.
In implant cases filed across the country, there is no doubt that these cases need to be merged.
But the MDL panel chose to hand the case to a highly respected federal judge in Birmingham, Alabama, named Sam C. Pointer Jr.
Then it is up to Pointer to decide which of the many plaintiffs\' lawyers should be named all-
Important Plaintiff Steering Committee
In any mass infringement, it is basically those lawyers who charge the maximum fee after the case is resolved.
If collective action remains with Rubin, Chesley will chair the steering committee, which is an inevitable conclusion;
Now, Chesley has to look for a location like everyone else.
But Chesley can be with the best of them.
Chesley heard a rumor that Pointer was interested in computer technology and vowed to underwrite a state --of-the-
Computer facilities for the Arts, making it convenient for all parties to access the many documents and testimonies collected;
In the end, the depository will keep 9 million documents, all of which are indexed, and in CD-
ROMs, Chesley, which costs nearly $1 million.
Finally, Pointer, the careful juror, struck a balance between the steering committee and the delegates of the two factions.
Not only did Chesley enter the committee, but he was also appointed as a co-member of the Committeechairman. The other co-
The chairman is an Atlanta lawyer named Ralph Knowles. -\"an old-
Old Fender
Bender type, \"Fanberg--
He became a big Chesley critic.
\"It\'s not my idea to practice the law,\" Knowles said of the mass infringement he found himself in . \".
But 200 of the breasts
Implanted into the customer, he is too deep to hand over the land to others.
Also, there is a need to pay close attention to Chesley.
If he understood that, he would not admit it.
After the hearing, he boldly announced that all the unhappiness had disappeared in the previous months.
\"I saw a very united front on the plaintiff side,\" he told the media . \".
\"There is only one enemy,\" added Chesley . \"
\"Despite Pointer\'s attempt to accommodate, the infringement in Texas, there is a loophole in the plaintiff\'s steering committee that everyone knows.
There is no plaintiff lawyer from Texas.
This is not a trivial matter, because once the stampede begins, Texas soon becomes breast milk. Planting center;
Each of the four lawsuits was filed in the state.
Just the week the suspension was announced, Rick Laminack and his boss, John O\'Quinn, have filed 78 lawsuits and have had more breasts.
More than any other law firm in the country.
Another lawyer in Houston, Mike Gallagher
The free phone number is flooded with potential breasts.
The implant client is in the process of establishing a roster of more than 1,000 plaintiffs in the near future.
Richard Mithoff, who had his first Dow Corning case back in 1977, returned to his breast --
Implant business.
He has more than 400 clients.
They did not participate in the plaintiff\'s steering committee and were not supervised.
Instead of competing in Chesley, they intend to stay as far away as possible from Pointer\'s stadium.
They have their own games to play.
They are building up clients, not to participate in some of the national reconciliation processes that they publicly laugh at, but to prepare a large number of cases for trial in state courts.
Their sanctuary is the state court system.
As long as they can leave their case in Harris County, which includes Houston, away from the federal judiciary, they will be given a trial date.
Generating a large number of customers and then pushing their case through the Texas court system, one after another, like the quarter in slot machines, is the essence of their strategy.
While Chesley\'s strategy is to merge cases and then he can resolve them collectively, lawyers in Harris County find that their chances are the opposite: to prevent mergers (
At least their case)
Then use the potential threats of 2,000 individual trials to get money from big companies. That\'s how big-
Time court lawyers like O\'Quinn act as mass infringement.
This method brings great advantages.
One is economies of scale, in which case there are hundreds or even thousands of similar cases.
If they win a high point, there is also a potential domino effect.
Profile case, this will allow the company to think twice before facing the risk of another trial, rather than resolve when future cases arise.
On the other hand, the defendant\'s big victory did not bring them that much: there were still 1,999 cases piled up behind it.
This is a strategy of attrition. it works very well.
Just as Chesley waited for his first dime from his chest.
Implanted lawsuit, John O\'Quinn got about $100 million in settlement from his breastimplant work. He keeps 40%.
Needless to say, lawyers have a lot of self, but few people have a self as big as o\'kunen.
A tall guy, marl Road.
The man is characterized by both relaxed and slightly malicious smiles.
Over the years working in law in Houston, he has become a legend. -
The first thing to point out is himself.
He likes to tell the story of how he won $8.
5 million damages for the death of cattle. (
\"One of my friends has a paralyzed case against Exxon. . .
At the same time.
I told him, \'I will buy more for my dead bull than paralyzing you. \'\")
It is said that he has lost the only time in his career, and his victory has brought amazing losses: $0. 65 billion in one case, another of $0. 517 billion, 0. 109 billion of $1/3.
He is often likened to Joe Jamale, the most famous of all Harris County trial lawyers, who won probably the most spectacular judgment ever: penzor defeated the German for $11 billion
Even the scandal that O\'Quinn is involved in is bigger-than-life quality.
In 1989, when the Texas Bar tried to disqualify his lawyer on the grounds of improper client invitations and cost-sharing, O\'Quinn responded by hiring seven of the best
He called it the \"Great seven\" state-renowned criminal lawyer. \" (
He got off the bus with a slap on his wrist. )
Another time, he was accused of having an affair with the jurors.
He acknowledged the relationship, but insisted it didn\'t start until the trial was over.
The admission cost him his marriage, but saved his career.
There is no doubt that O\'Quinn believes in his own myth;
At staff meetings, he often declared \"God bless him to help the little guy \".
\"But the other part of his success is not much to talk about.
Oquinn and other members of the Harris County plaintiff bar operate in one county and one state where the deck is in their favor.
Texas is a holy land for plaintiffs.
In Texas, people\'s judgments are higher than anywhere else in the country ---
Some lawyers call it Texas insurance\"-
The standard of evidence is more favourable to the plaintiff.
In Texas, people who have never been involved in the state are able to try litigation in state courts, and it would be ridiculous to use in other jurisdictions.
In Texas, it is easier for plaintiff lawyers to get a trial of a large number of cases than most other places-
Until a few days before the trial, the defense did not even know which of the many plaintiffs they would face in court.
James Jenkins, general counsel for Dow Corning, complained: \"They have control of the case file . \".
Finally, and most importantly, Texas judges have to take part in elections if they want to keep their seats.
It is no surprise that the largest campaign contributor in the state is the plaintiff\'s lawyer.
O\'Quinn gave $183,000 to 1990 and 1994 political candidates across the state,-
This figure does not even include his contribution to judicial candidates.
In the fall of 1993, a Harris County judge named Caroline Johnson received $6,250 from O\'Quinn ---
A few months after she became a judge, a large breast of o\'kunen was handed over to her --implant cases.
This is her personal greatest contribution.
As for the judges who are not considered Proplaintiff--
And some--
The plaintiff bar did not work silently for their failure.
A source close to the company said O\'Quinn had launched a \"shadow movement\" to get a judge out of office and let a person \"look for dirt \". \" (
Laminack, speaking on behalf of the company, denied this. )Texas\'s pro-
The plaintiff\'s reputation is well known among corporate lawyers, and the standard strategy for handling this reputation is to \"hand over\" the Texas case to the federal court.
In fact, in most other states, breast
At the Pointer Court in Birmingham, the implanted cases were periodically deleted-
This is how integration works.
But the defense quickly learned that they could not rule out the case in Texas.
The rule on expulsion states that if a defendant resides in the state, the case may remain in the state court.
Neither O\'Quinn nor the rest of Harris County\'s lawyers are plastic surgeons, nor are they companies.
Instead, they were the inventors of breast implants.
Dr. Thomas Cronin
Frank Gerow, including the Houston people, is dead.
Surprisingly, their estate constitutes a legitimate party to the proceedings.
To a large extent, because he is able to apply his considerable talent in this most professional field
O\'Quinn, the plaintiff in the jurisdiction, is currently valued at approximately $0. 5 billion.
His reputation is terrible. many companies will quietly settle with him. -
Much more than they did with other lawyers. -
Instead of facing him in court.
The structure of his law firm maximizes his income.
Although there are three other names on the door (
Including Laminack)
The company is not a partnership.
As O\'Quinn himself described, it was a \"benevolent monarchy \".
\"The rest of the lawyers in the company are paid, plus the percentage of the income they generate ---
O\'Quinn said it gave them \"part of what they killed \".
\"What is that, it is only his own decision;
Give him the rest.
Prepare and run for Dow Corning and other defendants to consolidate the breasts
Federal-level implants are mixed.
Integration saves the company millions of dollars and even more human resources
Hours, because of the testimony (
To give an obvious example)
Only once, not hundreds.
But the merger also helped the plaintiff.
The new lawyer can know that a lot of work has been done ---
In the words of Chesley, he immediately became an \"armed warrior \".
\"Dozens or even hundreds of cases can be filed at the price of a single filing fee.
The merger of litigation will inevitably lead to more litigation.
1,000 breast
Implant the litigation mushroom 5,000 and then 10,000
The process has begun to rely on itself as usual.
On the other hand, the emergence of Harris County strategy is a disaster for these companies.
Lawyers like O\'Quinn can get a trial date soon.
Any trial in Texas and its terrible prospect for Texas
The loss of scale is likely to greatly increase the bet.
In fact, these companies find themselves caught up in a legal pinch movement, one at the federal level and the other at the state level.
Among them, Harris County is much more dangerous.
O\'Quinn and Laminack are starting to build their customer base and will eventually reach an astonishing 2,500 plaintiffs.
Part of the reason they do this is from lesser-
Well-known lawyers, who, once the case is resolved, will receive a small portion of \"killing\", in part by connecting themselves to the rattan pot --
For some breasts
Implant support group.
Like most large plaintiff companies, they also rely on advertising.
Of course, Okun\'s ads stand out from the packaging.
In a picture of a well.
The title of \"women given\" is: will the dream breast die for it?
They then proceeded to prepare the case for trial, to receive testimony and to make findings, while laughing at the slower pace of lawyers on the federal track.
Sure enough, by the fall of 1992, Laminack and O\'Quinn were ready to file a lawsuit against Bristol --Myers Squibb.
On the eve of the trial, the matter was settled.
O\'Quinn and Laminack are already running.
Chesley and Knowles are also running.
Despite the slow progress of their own case preparation work, behind the scenes, the two conducted secret negotiations with Van Berg.
By the end of 1992, these negotiations included not only the three, but also the negotiators of Baxter and Bristol --
The same is true of shiguibao.
As the negotiations progressed, former rivals Chesley and Knowles established a friendship that became stronger every day.
Of course, whether it is the fact that the negotiations have already started, or the news of Chesley --
The Knowles union may bring joy to other lawyers in the case.
Sure enough, when the news of the negotiations began to leak in the spring of 1993, the trial lawyers broke out.
The plaintiffs\' lawyers held an angry meeting again, only this time there were 200 lawyers in the room, not 50.
Again, class-
Litigation Lawyers and trial lawyers abuse each other.
The climax meeting was held in the court of Pointer on April 1993.
Shy Knowles-
The person who should take care of the interests of the trial lawyer ---
He admitted that he agreed to the requirement of secrecy, but insisted that it was Dow Corning, not Chesley, who imposed the condition.
However, he also insisted that he and Chesley would not give away the shop.
In fact, he said it was Chesley who changed his way of life.
\"Ralph calmed down the predicament,\" said a lawyer . \".
Nevertheless, the other lawyers insisted on expanding the bargaining committee, which Pointer agreed.
He soon appointed three other lawyers to negotiate with the companies.
Surprisingly, one of them is Mike Gallagher from Harris County, Texas.
Gallagher is a trial lawyer with all the advantages of Harris County, why is he involved in federal cases?
One answer is that there are so many cases in Texas that he believes it is important to have \"their\" plaintiffs represented on the bargaining table.
He was also involved because he was convinced that he could negotiate a better deal for the plaintiff than Chesley.
It turned out that he was right: In the end, he made such a rich deal that it was destined to break.
But at the same time, he became the watchdog of Chesley.
After their first case was resolved, the $25 million flu, O\'Quinn and Laminack immediately started their second case, also for Bristol --Myers Squibb.
They do this: finish one, start the next, and keep the pressure.
Their second client, however, was not entirely the plaintiff of the dream.
Her name is Pamela Johnson, 45 years old, and the implant is broken and usually has symptoms of fatigue and joint pain.
She was implanted with implants for purely cosmetic reasons, and the jury tended to disagree.
She smokes a pack of cigarettes a day.
She underwent implant surgery at the age of 29, but did not receive any treatment until she was in her 40 s.
Despite her illness, she didn\'t waste much time at work, and O\'Quinn called it \"there have been serious flu cases all the time \".
O\'kunen\'s own research shows that it is unlikely that the jury will show sympathy for her.
Maybe that\'s why Bristol.
Miles decided that it would try the Pamela Johnson case instead of a settlement.
The case was broadcast on court television, making it the best single ad in the history of O\'Quinn.
During the break of the trial, the TV presenter of the court will answer the phone call from the audience. -
Always looking for some free suggested implants.
The host responded more than once, recommending the caller to Okun\'s office.
The audience can also see O\'Quinn in action because he\'s in Bristol-
Miles, with his own internal documents, gently directed Johnson to complete his testimony and lit his fire --and-
The debate over the closure of sulfur.
They can see the results.
Two days before Christmas in 1992, the jury awarded Pamela Johnson an astonishing $25 million. That was Texas-style damages!
It doesn\'t matter, the case was resolved at a considerable cost on appeal.
$25 million is a public figure.
Among the thousands of women who filed a lawsuit, this figure raised great expectations.
This puts a lot of pressure on those negotiating a global solution that they now have to deal.
A new round of publicity was guaranteed.
Immediately, the stampede began again.
In a few months, the number of breasts
Implant lawsuits across the country doubled.
The same is true of John o\'kunen\'s clients.
The end of the first part.
Next Issue: How Dow Corning can negotiate bankruptcy directly.
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