Mass Torts in Texas
For many people the first time they hear the term “mass torts” is when they become a plaintiff in this type of legal action. Typically, mass tort claims are filed by product liability attorneys when a large group of consumers has been harmed by the same defective products but not necessarily in the same way. Although you may not be familiar with the term, according to Reuters mass torts makeup over 40 percent of product liability cases.
If you or a loved one has suffered personal injury as a result of a defective medication or product, it is essential that you contact a first-rate product liability attorney to help you understand your legal options. Tautfest Bond is a legal firm with the experience and skill, both in negotiation and litigation, to help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Differences Between Mass Torts and Class Actions
Although class actions and mass torts both involve large groups of plaintiffs confronting a common group of defendants accused of causing them harm, most often mass torts are filed when consumers are injured by drugs, medical devices, or other products that may have caused a broad range of injuries. The vast majority of mass tort claims are settled out of court.
Plaintiffs in mass tort claims rarely comprise a single class of individuals. Nonetheless, in both mass torts and class actions, the fact that the multiple plaintiffs have product liability claims against the same defendant makes it possible to combine these claims into a single legal action rather than to file many individual lawsuits.
One of the primary differences between a mass tort and a class action lawsuit is that in mass tort lawsuits each claimant is treated as an individual in spite of the fact that he or she is suing as part of a large group. What this means is that each claimant must prove through evidence, such as medical records, that he or she suffered personal harm. In a mass tort, as in a class action or individual lawsuit, the goal is to convince the court that there was a defect in the product and that the defect was the direct cause of the plaintiff’s physical injury, emotional trauma and/or financial loss.
In a class action suit, on the other hand, claimants are represented as a single entity, which means that they are all considered to be one plaintiff and do not have to prove their claims on an individual basis. One claimant is named in the suit as the lead plaintiff or class representative. Because mass torts may deviate somewhat from standard legal procedure, they require more in-depth knowledge of product liability law, knowledge that the accomplished attorneys at Tautfest Bond possess.
What Makes Tautfest Bond Special
At Tautfest Bond we frequently deal with complicated mass tort cases so we have a number of effective strategies at the ready. Not only are we uniquely prepared to handle your case, but we pride ourselves on being responsive to all of your questions and concerns. We will clarify the legal steps we are taking in understandable terms so that you can make informed decisions and trust us to work with you as a team. No matter whether you are a client in a mass tort action or an individual liability claim, you can depend on us to work vigorously in your best interests. Moreover, you will never have to pay attorneys’ fees until we win your case.
Common Types of Mass Torts
There are, unfortunately, and sometimes tragically, many cases in which defective products slip through the barriers designed to protect consumers from harm. The following kinds of torts are all too common, affecting thousands of individuals every year:
- Medical device mass torts — when a medical device, such as an IVC filter or transvaginal mesh, causes harm and loss to multiple patients
- Medication mass torts — when a medication, (e.g. Zofran or Xarelto) through content or contamination causes adverse reactions in many people
- Toxic substances mass torts – when toxic chemicals or other substances (such as asbestos) cause widespread health problems
- Disaster mass torts – when evidence reveals that, after a manmade disaster, such as a balcony collapse or explosion, or a natural disaster, such as a hurricane, serious injuries were the result of structural defects or insufficient preparation for a storm
- Product liability mass torts – when a defective product, such as an electric drill, an iron, or a brake pad, causes injury to multiple users or when a manufacturer has not provided sufficient warnings of potential risks to consumers
Advantages of Mass Torts
Only your product liability attorney can explain the reasons your particular claim should best be handled as a mass tort rather than as a class action or an individual lawsuit, but the possible advantages of mass tort civil actions are that they:
- Can be filed in state or federal court
- Can handle many plaintiffs at the same time
- Can continue to recruit even more plaintiffs in ongoing litigation
- Can air the case publicly to disseminate knowledge of risk
- Are able to make use of media publicity
- Provide efficiency to the judicial system by cutting down on the number of cases
- Reduce the amount of money fronted for expert witness fees, travel expenses, etc
Mass tort litigation protects the public, leveling the playing field between large corporations and the individuals they may have harmed. If you have been seriously injured in a product liability case, Tautfest Bond will know, or investigate, whether you are part of a large group of plaintiffs. We will fight aggressively to see to it that you receive the damages you deserve for lost income, property damage, pain and suffering, or for the tragic wrongful death of a loved one. Contact us to begin the process. The wheels of justice may turn slowly, but Tautfest Bond will work efficiently to make sure you and your family are treated fairly.