Attorney General Curtis Hill this month joined a bipartisan group of 23 state attorneys general in urging the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold states’ ability to sue pharmaceutical manufacturers when they mislead consumers about the potential side effects of their products.
In an amicus brief filed Nov. 21 in the U.S. Supreme Court, Attorney General Hill and his counterparts argue that Merck, a pharmaceutical company, can be held liable under state law for misleading and misrepresenting the side effects of their drug Fosamax.
The 14-state coalition filed an amicus brief arguing that if the Supreme Court sides with Merck, it will hinder states’ ability to take legal action against a pharmaceutical manufacturer for misleading and misrepresenting its products. Additionally, the attorneys general argue that Merck may be held liable under state law even if it is not liable under federal law.
After suffering from a specific type of fracture, hundreds of Fosamax users filed personal injury lawsuits against Merck, alleging that it did not warn consumers about the risk of these specific fractures. Merck claims that, because the FDA did not approve a warning label for a different type of fracture, it is not liable under state law.