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Abilify Case Information Required For All Gambling Loss Claims Pending in MDL

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As the four month-period provided for parties to finalize a global Abilify settlement came to an end, the U.S. District Judge presiding over the federal litigation is requiring plaintiffs to provide additional information about their claims for gambling losses allegedly caused by the antipsychotic medication.

There are currently more than 1,600 Abilify cases pending against Bristol-Myers Squibb and Otsuka Pharmaceuticals, each raising similar allegations that users developed devastating gambling addictions, or engaged in other compulsive behaviors shortly after starting use of the drug or changing doses.

After settlements were reached in a small group of early bellwether cases just before trials were set to begin earlier this year, U.S. District Judge M. Casey Rodgers issued an order in May, which afforded the parties until September 1 to finalize a framework for global resolution of the gambling loss claims.

While the parties have informed the Court that negotiations are progressing, details of a settlement program have not been finalized or reported.

In a new order (PDF) issued on August 31, Judge Rodgers indicates that additional information is needed from all individual plaintiffs to evaluate the inventory of cases pending in the federal multidistrict litigation (MDL).

By October 31, plaintiffs have been directed to provide a Supplemental Plaintiff Profile Form, which provides answers to detailed questions about their use of Abilify, gambling addiction diagnosis, other drugs taken and other details about their case.

“The Supplemental PPF must be signed by each plaintiff under penalty of perjury,” Judge Rodgers indicated. “Failure to timely submit a completed Supplemental PPF will result in sanctions, up to and including dismissal of a case.”

The parties are scheduled to meet with Judge Rodgers for the next case management conference in the Abilify litigation on September 13.

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