A California state judge has rejected a proposed class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of state residents who took Vioxx before it was pulled from the market in 2004. Lawyers for former Vioxx users and health insurance plans were attempting to get Merck & Co. to repay what these residents paid for the drug. The Plaintiffs’ lawyers argued patients would have taken other pain relievers had they known Vioxx doubled their risk of heart attack and stroke. But Judge Victoria Chaney of Los Angeles Superior Court ruled that the patients and insurers cannot sue as a group and therefore couldn’t proceed as a class. The judge said the individuals paid varying amounts for Vioxx and had too many other differences to sue jointly. Judges in other jurisdictions have rejected some other similar lawsuits against Merck.
Sources: Forbes, Associated Press and Law.com
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