Wednesday, December 14, 2011


In a major decision from the United States Supreme Court, American consumers are now denied the right to sue generic drug manufacturers for failing to warn of known dangers to human health caused by generic drugs.

In a five-four split, the five Republican Justices decided the case of Pliva, Inc. v Gladys Mensing and Julie Demahy on June 23, 2011 in favor of the drug companies. This decision relating to generic drugs affects 75% of all prescription drugs dispensed in this country as that is the percentage which are generic, as opposed to brand named drugs. In her descent, Justice Soto Mayor properly complains that this decision by the Republican majority on the U.S. Supreme Court ". . .effectively re-writes our decision in Wyeth v Levine (2009), which holds that Federal Law does not preempt failure-to-warn claims against brand-name drug manufacturers".

As a result of the Pliva decision, whether a consumer harmed by inadequate warnings can obtain relief turns solely on the happen stance of whether our pharmacists fill a prescription with a brand name or a generic drug.

As a result of this new United States Supreme Court decision extending preemption (federal powers as being superior to those of the state), residents in the other 49 states are now denied access to American Courts, as Michiganians have been denied access to the courts since Gov. Engler passed statewide legislation, later affirmed by the Republican majority in the Michigan Supreme Court. These immunities favoring pharmaceutical companies over citizens are ironically coming from the Republicans who always claim their disdain for federal power over state's rights.

Each time the clients of Charfoos & Christensen, P.C. vote to support Republican candidates, they can expect those candidates will diminish their rights to sue, and diminish their rights to hold wrongdoers responsible for cleaning up the messes they cause. Where money is concerned, corporate responsibilities go out the window and the consumers lose again. Each time we vote for elected officials, we make choices that affect the type of society we, our friends and family live in.

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