On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge M. Casey Rodgers dismissed 149 cases linked to the side effects of the antipsychotic drug Abilify due to plaintiffs' failure to comply with court orders following the announcement of a global settlement by the defendants Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. in February.
Judge Rodgers discovered that the dismissed plaintiffs didn't follow the directions by either failing to submit supporting documentation for their claims or submitting documentation that failed to establish that they used Abilify.
A separate order published on September 9 by Judge Rodgers indicates that four plaintiffs submitted satisfactory responses and would face no sanctions. The Plaintiffs were found eligible for a settlement award as they submitted all the necessary documentation post the initial and follow-up notice in April from the claims administrator. Three of them accepted a settlement award on August 9, and one plaintiff accepted the award on September 11. These four are in the process of submitting their releases.
There are more than 600 lawsuits originally filed in 2016 by consumers from several states, including Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania against Abilify manufacturers. The multidistrict litigation MDL No. 2734 (In Re: Abilify Compulsive Behavior Products Liability Litigation) was formed in October 2016 in the Northern District of Florida for coordinated discovery and pre-trial proceedings.