Tylenol lawsuits filed because of the harm caused by the popular drug’s use during pregnancy now see a new development as a special master has been appointed in order to oversee the census of these lawsuits. Prenatal exposure to Tylenol, also known as acetaminophen or paracetamol has been linked to disruption of a child’s healthy development. These developmental issues have been linked to an increased risk of autism spectrum disorder, ADHD, and other issues.
Those who have used Tylenol or other drugs containing acetaminophen during pregnancy and with children with resulting developmental disorders should consider speaking to a product liability lawyer about the possibility of filing a Tylenol autism lawsuit.
The Master Appointed for Tylenol Lawsuits
The federal judge overseeing the litigation over Tylenol’s harmful prenatal effects, Judge Denise Cote, has recently appointed a special master to help conduct a census of the many claims that have been filed by parents and their affected children across the country regarding developmental disorders caused by Tylenol. These Tylenol lawsuits have already grown past 100 count and have shown no signs of halting their increase in number.
Many Tylenol lawsuits have been filed against major retailers that provide Tylenol and other over-the-counter drugs containing acetaminophen such as Walmart, CVS, Costco, and Walgreens. As of the writing of this article, there have still not been any lawsuits filed directly against Johnson & Johnson who are the makers of Tylenol. However, it is anticipated that their involvement in this litigation is inevitable.
On December 23rd, 2022, Judge Cote appointed Randi S. Ellis as special master in the Tylenol multidistrict litigation (MDL). Ellis, will oversee a census of all the claims part of the ongoing Tylenol Lawsuit MDL and is a reputable dispute resolution attorney that has also been appointed as a special master in thousands of Paraquat Parkinson’s Disease lawsuits and other notable lawsuits.
What Is a Special Master?
A special master is a subordinate official appointed by a judge to oversee and advise on certain aspects of a case. Most of the time a special master is an attorney although this is not required. A special master can oversee and assist in a wide variety of actions taken by the courts that appoint them. They may oversee the collection of evidence, facilitate in child custody cases, and in the case of the Tylenol MDL, conduct a census of the many involved claims.
According to the order issued by Judge Cote appointing Ellis as Special Master,
“The Census Special Master shall meet and confer with Plaintiffs’ Co-Lead Counsel and the members of Defendants’ Leadership, individually or together in her discretion, and make reports and recommendations, including proposing orders, regarding the creation of the Census,” Judge Cote wrote. “Those recommendations shall include (a) identification of a database platform to host the Census; (b) discussion of how to best effectuate the Census, including discussion of what data and documents should be collected regarding filed cases, the means of collecting the data and documents, the timing of collection, and the means for maintaining this database; and (c) a proposed order regarding the form of the Census and the parties’ obligations with respect to the Census.”
The same day Judge Cote appointed Ellis as Special Master in the Tylenol MDL, they also issued an order adopting the defendant's proposition regarding the MDL’s discovery process. The proposition called for parties to negotiate a single joint coordination order with questions and disagreements to be discussed via telephone conference on January 6, 2023.
How a Special Master Will Affect Tylenol Autism Lawsuits
Ultimately, the appointment of a special master in this process serves to help better organize the process of litigation. The number of lawsuits filed over prenatal acetaminophen exposure is growing and the litigation will become more complex as a result. The census will likely gather information regarding the details of each plaintiff’s claim which can be further used to prepare a representative group of claims for the bellwether trials to take place in the future.
These measures taken by judge Cote are necessary to help manage the growing litigation and join several other developments taken to handle the increase in Tylenol autism lawsuits.
In December 2022, Judge Cote appointed several Tylenol Autism lawyers to leadership positions in the multidistrict litigation. The lawyers assigned to these various positions will guide and manage the interests of the many plaintiffs involved in this litigation. Plaintiffs will still have their own lawyers to represent them although these leading Tylenol Autism lawyers will be directing the broad path litigation will be taking.
Tylenol and Acetaminophen Connection to Developmental Disorders
The reason for all of these product liability lawsuits is the newfound connection between Tylenol and an increased risk of developmental disorders among children whose mothers took the drug during pregnancy. Tylenol, also known as acetaminophen or paracetamol, is one of the most commonly used over-the-counter medications found in homes across the country. It is used to treat fevers and relieve mild to moderate pain.
Several studies of Tylenol have indicated that there is a very real risk of developmental disorders as a result of prenatal exposure. Studies published in JAMA Psychiatry and the American Journal of Epidemiology have both established a relationship between the use of Tylenol during pregnancy and the increased risk of developmental orders such as autism spectrum disorder and ADHD among prenatally exposed children.
Seeking a Tylenol Autism Lawyer
Those who have taken Tylenol or other drugs containing acetaminophen during pregnancy and had children suffer from developmental disorders such as autism may be able to seek compensation with a Tylenol autism lawsuit. Joining the ongoing litigation against the retailers and potentially the makers of improperly labeled Tylenol and acetaminophen products can provide the opportunity to seek compensation for damages suffered by your child such as medical expenses, lost earning potential, and even mental anguish.
Consider speaking to an experienced product liability lawyer about your case. A Tylenol autism lawyer can provide you with valuable information regarding the validity of your case, the value of your damages, and how they can assist you with seeking compensation.