Verdict Update for the 2016 DePuy Pinnacle Trial, New Information Released
A follow up regarding the latest DePuy Pinnacle $1B verdict.
Hi, Stuart Talley here to provide another update on the Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip verdict that was recently announced last week. Since last week, we’ve obtained some additional information about the verdict in the case, and I want to revise something I said previously. There was a billion-dollar verdict, but only 32 million of that billion dollars was what we call compensatory damages. Initial reports indicated that the billion dollars was made up half of compensatory and half of punitives, but in reality it was 32 million dollars in compensatory damages and the rest almost nine hundred and seventy million dollars was for punitive damages.
This is very interesting because what it does is it talks about what the compensatory damages are for each person. So, each person that had a case received between four and six million dollars in actual compensatory damages, those are the damages that are awarded to compensate someone for their injuries. So, they include pain and suffering, lost earnings, medical expenses… those kinds of items. The rest of the award, the 970 million dollars, was an amount that was designed to punish DePuy and Johnson & Johnson. And when I say punish them, what I mean is it was a mount that was awarded to discourage them from doing this again.
And so, there are some issues on appeal and there is a very good chance that that punitive damage award might be reduced. There is some case law out there from the United States Supreme Court indicating that punitive damage awards should not exceed ten times compensatory awards. That case came down several years ago, and since then, it’s been chipped away at a little, and so there may be some arguments that a ten times multiplier no longer applies. But if you did have a ten-time multiplier, that would reduce the billion dollar award to something in the range of 350 million, 332 million, some somewhere in that range.
So, it remains to be seen how the trial court will react. There will definitely be a motion seeking to reduce the verdict. That is pretty standard. There will also be an appeal after the judge makes his final decision. So, that’s where we are. If you have any questions or concerns about the trial, feel free to give us a call. You can reach us at the phone number on the screen, go to our website fill out one of our online forms, and a lawyer will get right back to you.