Merck Propecia® (Finasteride) MDL Update: First Bellwether Trial No Earlier Than September 2017

Unfortunately, we are looking at two full years yet, before the first Propecia® MDL test case is opened, before a federal jury, here. That, according to the latest revised PPO No. 10, in this litigation. Yes, the pace of such litigation is decidely. . . glacial.

Now, in addition to setting the aspirational trial schedule, the first few pages of the order set a new certification procedure — for all files Merck has turned over (essentially requiring Merck to swear that they are complete copies of the actual files). [Even so, no mention as of yet about what the very able judge will do regarding files withheld as privileged — and no mention of what happened regarding the doctor/PI’s clinical trials files.]

I’ll attach the entire order, as an 8 page PDF affair, for those who wish to study the time lines (which lead eventually to jury trials), in greater detail. Here are — to my eye — the most salient bits, though:

. . . .The Parties will serve upon the other their respective Case Pool selections to fill slots in the initial Case Pool with the Court on May 13, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. Neither party may select a case for the Case Pool unless the Plaintiffs supplied to Counsel for Merck both: (i) substantially completed medical record authorizations (meaning authorizations for the prescribing physician, the primary care physician, and pharmacy records), and (ii) a Plaintiff’s Profile Form by no later than January 1, 2015. . . .

On September 30, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, each party shall file with the Court its proposal for three (3) trial cases from its picks among the Case Pool, as the first wave of Bellwether dispositive motions and trials (the “First Bellwether Tranche”). . . .

The Court anticipates that the First Bellwether Tranche shall be trial ready by September, 2017. The Court will issue a scheduling order governing all trial related obligations, including the specific date for commencement of trial, following entry of the Daubert Orders. . . .

So patience will indeed be a virtue here. [It has taken me about a week to get this posted. So sorry.] And as ever, onward we sail — to see “The Martian” this evening, of course. Of course. Smile. . . .

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