SoClean Machine Lawsuits Centralized For Pretrial Proceedings Before Same Judge Presiding Over Philips CPAP MDL

Lawsuits over SoClean machines alleging that dangerous levels of ozone are used to sanitize CPAP machines will be handled by same judge coordinating pretrial proceedings for thousands of Philips CPAP machine lawsuits

The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) has ordered that all SoClean machine lawsuits filed throughout the federal court system over problems caused by the ozone-based CPAP sanitizing device will be centralized before the same judge handling all pretrial proceedings in thousands of Philips CPAP recall lawsuits.

There are currently at least 11 class action lawsuits against SoClean filed in different U.S. District Courts, each raising similar claims that the CPAP machine cleaners release dangerous levels of ozone, which can lead to coughing, nasal irritation, headaches, asthma attacks and other respiratory problems.

SoClean devices are intended to sterilize and deodorize CPAP breathing machines, which are used by individuals with sleep apnea. However, the lawsuits note that to be effective at sanitizing the devices using ozone, SoClean devices must emit levels of gas that are higher than can be safely tolerated by humans or animals.

Given that millions of these devices were sold throughout the U.S., the number of lawsuits over the SoClean CPAP sanitizing problems is expected to continue to rise in the coming months and years.

SoClean CPAP Machine Lawsuits

Did you or a loved one experienced problems from SoClean used to sanitize a recalled Philips CPAP machine?


In October, plaintiffs filed a motion to centralize the SoClean machine lawsuits before one judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, to help avoid duplicative discovery, prevent contradictory rulings from different judges, and serve the convenience of the parties, witnesses and courts.

On January 27, the JPML heard oral arguments over the request, and issued a transfer order (PDF) on February 2, ordering the cases transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, where they will be overseen during pretrial proceedings by District Judge Joy Flowers Conti.

Judge Conti has also been assigned to oversee the multidistrict litigation (MDL) established for thousands of Philips CPAP machine lawsuits, which allege that a defective sound abatement foam used in millions of breathing devices deteriorates and releases toxic chemicals and particles directly into the air pathways. These problems have been linked to reports of cancer, lung damage and other respiratory injuries experienced by individuals who used the recalled Philips CPAP machines every night for treatment of their sleep apnea.

At the time of the recall, Philips suggested that use of SoClean and other similar CPAP sanitizing devices involving ozone and UV light may exacerbate the foam’s degradation. However, in October 2021, SoClean sued Philips, arguing that it was attempting to use the ozone cleaning machine as a scape goat for what it called a “glaring design flaw” that placed a defective sound abatement foam directly in the machine’s air pathways.

Given common questions of fact and law involved in the litigation against Philips and SoClean, Philips urged the U.S. JPML to transfer the SoClean cases to the MDL already established for the recalled Philips CPAP machines, arguing that the SoClean and Philips litigations will both involve discovery related to the causes and effects of the foam breaking down, indicating that many of the same witnesses and evidence will be involved in the proceedings. However, both plaintiffs and SoClean opposed the request, arguing that the primary issues in the SoClean lawsuits related to the safety of the CPAP sanitizing devices and health risks caused by ozone exposure.

“[W]e conclude that centralization of the SoClean actions in the Western District of Pennsylvania before Judge Joy Flowers Conti will allow for coordination the [the Philips CPAP MDL], as well as separate pretrial proceedings concerning the SoClean actions,” according to the order. “Judge Conti, who presides over [the Philips CPAP MDL], is uniquely situated to preside over the overlapping claims in the SoClean MDL. She is, of course, free to structure each MDL as she deems fit, and to establish separate tracks for discovery and other pretrial proceedings as appropriate. We are confident that she will steer this matter on a prudent course.”


  • PatrickFebruary 5, 2022 at 1:16 pm

    I would like to know what will be done about the soclean cleaning machines that were purchased. Will the buyers be given anything for the purchase of the device.

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