In recent Bloomberg article, the first three settlement awards recovered by DePuy ASR hip replacement victims were characterized as “at the low end of what the company should have expected” to pay, according to Eric Gordon, a business professor at the University of Michigan who follows the pharmaceutical industry. Compared to the $5.5 million that a jury recently awarded a victim of injuries sustained by a vaginal mesh implant, the reported $200,000 settlements accepted by DePuy ASR claimants Annelise Rundle, Martha Bender, and Katherine Guy do seem small.
Victims of DePuy ASR injuries who are considering speaking to a personal injury lawyer about taking legal action to recover compensation for their injuries should not base their recovery expectations on the $200,000 settlement amounts reportedly recovered by DePuy ASR claimants Annelise Rundle, Martha Bender, and Katherine Guy. Every case, every injury, is different, and settlement amounts and jury awards depend largely on specific circumstances.
Rundle’s medical records showed she was “generally healthy with no major medical problems,” according to Bloomerberg. In contrast, many of the DePuy ASR victims whose claims are still pending—or have yet to be filed—have sustained serious injuries.
The U.S. civil court system is intended to help an injured party to recover compensation commensurate with his or her loss. When an injured party recovers compensation proportionate to the injuries he or she sustained, the civil court system fulfills its objectives: the injured parties are made financially “whole” again, and the defendant companies are encouraged to ensure they don’t repeat the behavior that caused the victim’s injuries.