Mass tort cases are different from other personal injury cases. These civil actions can have many plaintiffs against one or many defendant corporations with a venue in a state or federal court. There are three things in particular that set mass torts apart from other personal injury suits. Mass torts involve the a large number of claims regarding a single device or product. While many plaintiffs may be involved, the underlying issues are all very similar or the same across all cases. Mass torts also have an interdependence in value among claims.
Mass torts are often confused with class action lawsuits, which are legal actions in which a lawsuit is filed on behalf of a large group of people with the same circumstances or injuries to reduce the number of court cases resulting from a single problem. A class action lawsuit allows, for example, thousands of defendants to sue a corporation accused of overbilling customers. Class action lawsuits are an important tool, but they usually leave claimants with a small amount of compensation in exchange for damages.
While mass tort claims are also a tool for reducing court cases for similar situations, mass torts are handled differently and they may cover a broad range of claim types. Mass tort claims are often brought when consumers are injured on a large scale by defective products or pharmaceuticals. Because product and drug defects can lead to a wide variety of problems for different people, cases are rarely similar.
With mass tort litigation, a single attorney or a group of attorneys may represent consumers in individual cases with investigation shared among all cases. This allows a network of attorneys to pool resources and ideas to ensure all clients receive a fair settlement.
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If you believe your case may fall under mass tort litigation, contact the Law Office of Tawni Takagi to discuss your legal options.