Product Liability and Mass Tort
No matter how vigilant a business is about quality control and product safety, the risk of product liability litigation is constant, posing both financial and reputational costs. Our multi-disciplinary national product team collaborates with clients across industry sectors, focusing on efficient, cost-effective solutions tailored to each client’s industry-specific needs.
Our attorneys have a successful track record defending product companies in state and federal courts across the country. Clients call on us when they know a case may need to be tried or when a complex class action requires experienced, strategic case management. We also develop strategies that expedite closure to challenging controversies through early motion practice or strategic mediation.
Companies retain Ballard Spahr to defend their most complex and challenging product liability and mass tort litigation. We are similarly asked on a regular basis to counsel companies on significant risks arising in the every-day development and sale of important products.
- We have successfully handled several class actions around the country for a significant domestic distributor of Japanese motor vehicles, including the denial of class certification in a multi-district litigation (MDL) alleging consumer fraud in connection with the provision of telematics services; dismissal on the pleadings of a national class alleging fuel leaks; settlement of a million member national class alleging excessive oil consumption; and coordination of voluntary market actions and recalls resulting in leveraging class actions to settlement on mootness grounds.
Industrial and Toxic Tort
- In connection with handling the defense of a series of industrial accident cases on behalf of a leading petrochemical company, we secured summary judgment in an aggressively litigated toxic tort action against a dozen defendants in the Superior Court of New Jersey in Camden, dismissing the claims of a young Marine who developed acute myeloid leukemia (AML) as a result of his alleged exposure to benzene from various products he used while in the military.
- As trial counsel for a leading global manufacturer of furnace refractory brick, we secured dismissal in several Pennsylvania cases in which plaintiffs alleged that they contracted cancer from exposure to asbestos-containing industrial products.
- We defeated class certification on behalf of a leading domestic manufacturer of dozens of the world’s top premium spirits brands in a putative action in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey in which a putative nationwide class claimed consumer fraud, breach of warranty, and unjust enrichment related to the defendants’ alleged false advertising of a popular alcoholic beverage.
- We successfully defended a national homebuilder against a class action by hundreds of New Jersey homeowners alleging that insulation around water pipes failed to comply with construction codes and caused consequential loss. Ballard Spahr filed a motion to dismiss the action in its entirety, which was granted in part, resulting in leveraging class counsel into a favorable settlement.
Pharmaceutical and Medical Device
- We served as national coordinating counsel for a major pharmaceutical manufacturer in litigation concerning an antihypertensive medication. We defended over 400 cases/claims nationwide as well as represented the manufacturer in the U.S. Department of Justice's grand jury investigation arising out of the product’s withdrawal.