Onewheel Accident Settlements To Be Discussed During Series of Conferences in June, August and October 2024

If the OneWheel settlement talks fail to resolve accident lawsuits, lawyers have selected a group of six potential bellwether cases that will be prepared for early trials in the federal MDL

The U.S. District Judge presiding over all Onewheel accident lawsuits has scheduled a series of settlement conferences over the next few months, hoping the parties can reach an agreement early in the litigation to resolve claims that the recalled electric skateboards unexpectedly threw riders to the ground, causing serious injuries.

Onewheels have become popular in recent years, featuring a flat skateboard surface with only one wheel, which is electrically powered and can accelerate to speeds of about 20 miles per hour. However, following a Onewheel recall issued in late September 2023, a growing number of product liability lawsuits have been filed, each raising nearly identical allegations that design defects caused devastating accidents, when a Onewheel stopped suddenly and nosedived.

Given common questions of fact and law raised in each of the lawsuits, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation decided late last year to consolidate Onewheel accident lawsuits as part of an MDL before U.S. District Judge Beth Labson Freeman in the Northern District of California, for coordinated discovery and pretrial proceedings.

OneWheel Lawsuit

Injured in a OneWheel Accident?

Lawsuits allege that design defects may cause a OneWheel to nosedive or suddenly stop. Settlements are being pursued for injuries in OneWheel electric skateboard accidents.

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In a court order (PDF) issued on April 11, Judge Freeman indicated that a series of OneWheel lawsuit settlement conferences will be held in coming months before Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler. The order calls for a pre-settlement conference to be held on June 27, followed by an initial settlement conference on August 13 and a second settlement conference on October 1.

The order urges the parties to alert the court if they believe the settlement conference will not be productive, or if parties and counsel are unavailable on those dates.

If the litigation can not be resolved early in the pretrial proceedings, it is likely that Judge Freeman will move forward with a bellwether process, where a small group of representative claims will be prepared for a series of test trials, to help the parties gauge how jurors are likely to respond to expert testimony and evidence likely to be repeated throughout the OneWheel lawsuits.

On April 10, each side submitted a list of three cases they believe should serve as representative bellwether test trials, for a total of six. Judge Freeman then issued an order (PDF) on April 18 requiring the parties to make any objections to the other side’s bellwether selections in a joint case management statement due on May 2.

The parties have been directed to submit a concise statement if they object to one of the other side’s selections, and advised that each side should be prepared to substitute any selected case if an objection is granted.

Following the MDL proceedings, settlement negotiations and any bellwether trials, if the parties are still unable to settle Onewheel lawsuits or reach another resolution for the litigation, dozens of individual claims may be later remanded back to the U.S. District Court where it originated for separate trial dates in the future.

Image Credit: marekuliasz / Shutterstock.com

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