As we previously reported, in March 2011, a petition was filed to consolidate all federal DePuy Pinnacle cases in either the Southern District of Texas or the Central District of California. Alternatively, the petition also asked that the United States Judicial Panel on Multi-District Litigation consider adding the Pinnacle cases to the already pending DePuy ASR MDL, which is centralized in the Northern District Court of Ohio. On May 16, 2011, a hearing was held by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (“JPML”) to consider the consolidation.
On May 23, 2011, the JPML decided that all federal DePuy Pinnacle hip implant lawsuits will be consolidated and centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas and assigned to Judge James E. Kinkeade. The granting of multi-district litigation (MDL) treatment will streamline the lawsuits, allowing the parties to avoid duplicative discovery and inconsistent rulings from different judges. Additionally, MDL treatment will provide more convenience for the witnesses, the parties and the court.