NuvaRing Birth Control May Cause Serious Health Problems

NuvaRing is a hormonal contraceptive ring placed in a woman's vagina to prevent pregnancy. It was first approved by the FDA in October, 2001, but not introduced onto the market until July, 2002. NuvaRing contains estrogen and progesterone.

It releases a dose of hormones into the bloodstream where it is absorbed by the vaginal wall. As a result, NuvaRing causes the uterus lining to be thin and prevent implantation of a fertilized egg, and also thickens cervical mucus which prevents sperm from entering the uterus.
Upon introduction, NuvaRing was considered a safer alternative to other forms of birth control. However, it causes some serious side effects which include…

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Cheerleading is Dangerous Business

66% of females injured in college and high school sports are injured in cheerleading. Take a quick look as I discuss the issue with colleauge, Michael Regan on Fox & Friends. 


Click image or HERE to play.

Samsung, T-Mobile, Other Major Companies Sued Over Sales of Radiation-Reducing Cell Phones

Inventors say companies profiting from invention

DALLAS - A Texas company has filed a federal patent infringement lawsuit against Samsung, T-Mobile and other major cell phone manufacturers, service providers and retailers based on claims that these companies are selling radiation-reducing cell phones without paying the inventors who hold the patent on the popular technology.

The Dallas litigation firm of Reyes Bartolomei Browne represents Tyler, Texas-based DownUnder Wireless, LLC, against 21 companies, including manufacturer Samsung; service providers including AT&T, Sprint Nextel, T-Mobile and Verizon; and retailers including, Best Buy, Target, Wal-Mart and others.

DownUnder filed suit against a group of cell phone manufacturers earlier this year, including HTC, LG, Motorola, Nokia, Sharp and Sony Ericsson. According to the lawsuits, DownUnder invented a design that calls for cell phone antennas to be placed in the base of the phone rather than the traditional placement in the earpiece near the user's head. DownUnder's design, which was awarded U.S. Patent No. 6,741,215, also angles the antenna away from the user. Both features work together to reduce the amount of potentially harmful radiation that could be transmitted into an individual's brain.

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33 News Segment on Basketball Floor Donated by Mavs

Reyes Bartolomei Browne is the law firm representing Donnell, Hayden, co-founder of the Gang Intervention Community Outreach Program in their plight to keep the $11,000 basketball floor located in the Saint James AME Church. The Dallas Mavericks donated the floor to the Gang Intervention Community Outreach Program. However, the church claims the right to the floor, stating the floor might be an “alteration, improvement, fixture or addition” to the church, making it church property. Our position is that the floor is easily removable and was a gift from the Mavs, making it the property of the GICOP.

Please view the 33 News segment about this case and the text of the story below:

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The Latest On Shoulder Pain Pump Lawsuits

I was quoted in the following article published on about PAGCL (Post-arthroscopic Glenohumeral Chondrolysis) resulting from the use of shoulder pain pumps:

Shoulder Pain Pump Lawsuits: Motion to Consolidate Due to High Volume
original article here

Due to the high number of lawsuits involving shoulder pain pumps across the U.S., motions have been filed to bring all cases forward in one court. Personal injury attorneys are still accepting legal cases relating to shoulder pain pumps that may cause Post arthroscopic Glenohumeral Chondrolysis or PAGCL.

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U.S. Supreme Court Sides with Plaintiff in Seminal Federal Pre-Emption Battle

Finally, some sanity from the U.S. Supreme Court. Just yesterday, the Court ruled in the Wyeth v. Levine case that Federal pre-emption does not override state court law and individuals will still have the right to bring a failure to warn lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company, under their state court laws, if that company’s drug harmed the individual and the pharmaceutical company failed to adequately warn of the potential harm. Had the ruling gone the other way, drug manufacturers would have been immune from state court lawsuits alleging their drugs caused harm. For eight years, the previous administration allowed the drug industry to erode the oversight powers of the FDA and worked feverishly to push the courts to accept the Federal pre-emption doctrine, thereby killing state court lawsuits against bad drug manufacturers. Yesterday’s decision was a common sense one that protects the rights of individuals who have been harmed by drug makers, and enables them to receive money damages.

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$16.5 Million in Duragesic Fentanyl Verdict

The Duragesic death saga continues.  On November 17, 2008, my law firm, Heygood, Orr, Reyes, Pearson & Bartolomei, achieved a $16,560,000 verdict for the family of a Cicero, Illinois woman who died while wearing a Duragesic fentanyl transdermal pain patch. After a 3 week trial, a Chicago jury found two Johnson & Johnson subsidiaries liable for the death of 38-year-old Janice DiCosolo, a mother of three.

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HORP&B Chicago Case against Makers of the Duragesic Pain Patch

Hours after a Sanford, Florida jury awarded $13.3 million to the family of a 34-year-old woman who died while wearing a Duragesic Fentanyl Pain Patch, my firm, Heygood, Orr, Reyes, Pearson & Bartolomei began trial in a Chicago state court jury on behalf of the family of Janice Dicosola of Cicero, Illinois.  The 38-year-old woman died in 2004 while wearing a Duragesic Pain Patch, manufactured by Alza Corporation and distributed by Janssen Pharmaceutica Products.

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Fentanyl Brings a Patch of Lawsuits

Duragesic Fentanyl Pain PatchA Sanford, Florida jury awarded $13.3 million to the family of 34-year-old Susan Susan Hodgemire, who died from the Duragesic Pain Patch just days after undergoing back surgery.  Hours after this verdict was returned, my firm, Heygood, Orr, Reyes, Pearson & Bartolomei, began its case against the manufacturers of Duragesic on behalf of the family of Janice Dicosolo of Chicago, who also died while wearing the Duragesic patch.

The manufacturer of the Duragesic Transdermal Pain Patch and other brands are being sued due to a leak in the patch that allows too much of the opioid painkiller to enter the system directly through the skin, causing fatal overdose.  Fentanyl is 100 times stronger than morphine, and this lethal drug has now killed several victims.

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$1.5 Million Verdict for 18-Wheeler Accident

I'm proud to announce that my law firm, Heygood, Orr, Reyes, Pearson & Bartolomei, has achieved a $1.5 million verdict for our clients, Ronny Martinez and Kenneth O’Neal, as compensation for injuries they received in an 18-wheeler accident that occurred on Interstate 35E in Waxahachie on July 2, 2006. Mr. Martinez suffered a fractured vertebra and Mr. O'Neal sustained a serious injury to his right knee, which required several reconstructive surgeries. Mr. O'Neal also suffered a mild traumatic brain injury and damage to his collarbone.

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VIDEO: Angel Reyes & Jim Orr on 2007 Duragesic Fentanyl Patch Verdict

Attorney's Angel Reyes and Jim Orr join Jan Schlichtmann of the Legal Broadcast Network while at the recent CLE event in Scottsdale, AZ put on by the Wyoming Trial Lawyers Association. Learn a bit more about the legal team that won the largest Duragesic Patch verdict in 2007 and how their firm approaches mass tort litigation. WATCH VIDEO...

Adding Insult to Injury

Those who fake injuries, caused by the wrongful conduct of others, make it much harder for those with legitimate claims to get the medical care and compensation they deserve. But in the case below cited in the Dallas Business Journal, it isn’t the individual making the false claim, it’s the caregiver!  Allegedly, according to the Allstate Insurance petition, this chiropractic organization solicited and coerced individuals into getting treatment for auto accident injuries they may not have sustained.  Further, the "patients" were then referred to lawyers who helped perpetrate the claims and assisted the "injured" patients by recovering over $10 million dollars for the victims' "injuries."  If this is true, it’s not only an insult to serious medical professionals, it’s an insult to my profession.  Schemes like this make it much tougher to get wrongfully injured clients compensated for their injuries.  Let's hope the Allstate allegations prove false. Continue Reading...

Be Careful What You Sue For

As you'll see from the press release below, when you treat people unfairly in business, justice will ultimately be served.  Our legal system is not perfect and never will be, but juries do know right from wrong when they see it.
Whether in your personal or business life, your word is your word; it doesn’t matter if it's in writing.  A promise is a promise, period.  And as far as trying to pull one over on a jury?  In this case, the facts speak for themselves, and this jury realized that if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck...well, you know the rest.
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OG Nation and HORP&B Join Forces

We all know that mud slinging is modus operandi when it comes to politics.  But in the corporate world, “mud bombing” is the more appropriate term.   For some reason, our society has deemed that honesty and fairness are virtues in one’s personal life, but that in the boardrooms of even the largest and most respected corporations, it’s no holds barred when it comes to allegations and outright lies. Why?  Because business is business.   When Judgment Day comes for these corporate bullies, I seriously doubt their double-standard argument will fling the pearly gates wide open. Continue Reading...

Investors Limited in Suing for Fraud

The Supreme Court just slammed the door on investor lawsuits that target secondary actors such as banks, law firms, and accounting firms that allegedly assist a company brought down by corporate fraud.  That means investors will not be able to recover any money from the advisors to corporate frauds that melt their investments like ice cream in August on a Dallas sidewalk.
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The class action we filed against Swift Meatpacking

The class action we filed against Swift Meatpacking survived the defendant's motion to dismiss.  Below is a recent article that details some of what was going on at the various Swift Meatpacking plants before we filed our case.

Illegals and business: A glimpse of the future?
Feds’ fierce probe of meatpacker Swift seen an ominous sign for employers
By Susan Berfield
updated 5:43 p.m. CT, Fri., Jan. 4, 2008

Sometime soon, perhaps by the end of this month, Christopher Lamb may plead guilty to harboring an illegal alien. Lamb, 37, was a human resources assistant manager at Swift & Co., among the largest beef and pork processors in the U.S. As immigration emerges as one of the most contentious issues of this election season, his case is emblematic of newly aggressive tactics against management by the U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement Agency, or ICE.
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Technology and the Art of Persuasion

By: Eric Pearson and Angel Reyes

At the most basic level, a trial lawyer's job is to persuade.  Whether the audience is a judge during a summary judgment hearing, opposing counsel across a table at mediation or a jury listening to an opening statement, the job of a trial lawyer is to persuade someone of a legal or factual position.  Using the latest technological tools can create an invaluable advantage over an opponent when it comes to persuading an audience.

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Spin Life Policies - a $30 Billion Market

After several years of remaining in the shadows, spin life policies are now squarely in the limelight.  Larry King, a multi-millionaire CNN television talk show host has filed a lawsuit against Alan Meltzer, the insurance broker that sold him the policy.  King's lawyers argue that because King sold his $10 million dollars in life insurance for $1.4 million, he now can't purchase any more life insurance to protect his minor children and his multi-million dollar estate at death.  Just how does King, who is 74 years old, have minor children anyway?  Oh yeah, his 6th wife, Shawn Southwick, is 26 years his junior! Continue Reading...

Dickie, Say It Ain't So!

The inspiration for John Grisham's "King of Torts" book and famous Alabama trial lawyer Dickie Scruggs was indicted for allegedly bribing a judge with a $50,000 payoff.

Dickie got famous for bringing big tobacco to its collective knees in the 1990s.  Indeed, "The Insider" starring Russell Crow was based on Dickie's work with former Brown & Williamson employee Jeffrey Wigand.  That work ultimately brought the tobacco companies to the settlement table.  Hurray for Dickie.
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Big Business Big Winner in Court Rulings

I had the privilege of being interviewed by Eric Torbenson of the Dallas Morning News about a discussion held at a continuing education event called the Bench Bar Conference, which was hosted by the Dallas Bar Association. This discussion was on whether the Texas Supreme Court now favors corporate defendants in court rulings.  Although many of my colleagues shared my views, others did not.   I believe the tides have changed, and the Texas Supreme Court caters to big business more often than not.   In fact, data shows that over 87% of the time, the court rules in favor of corporate defendants.  Arguments can be made that this trend is fair and just.  I strongly disagree, and believe that injured parties are receiving biased and unfair treatment by the courts. But you decide for yourself by reading Eric's article in its entirety below. Continue Reading...

Forget Fair; It's Litigation As Usual

Today's (11.17.07) New York Times article by Joe Nocera "Forget Fair; It's Litigation As Usual," explores the world of mass tort litigation. Nocera is no friend of the everyman and is cynical about private lawyers policing big pharmaceutical companies in the form of "mass tort" actions. Mass torts got their start back in the 80's when various medical devices and drugs were rushed to market by global pharmaceutical companies in hopes of a stock price spike by shooting for a billion dollars a year sales target. These companies are purportedly regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (the "FDA") however, the FDA is outgunned, outmanned, and now owned by big pharma.  Lots of theories abound as to how that happened and what, if any, role the FDA played in its ever lighter regulatory role as consumer safety and watch dog, in the spawning of mass tort actions.  Suffice to say, the FDA, often lobbied, staffed, and paid for by big pharma, has not been super quick in stopping these companies from rolling out blockbuster drugs, even if the only blockbuster part of the drug is related to sales and not health efficacy. Continue Reading...

Tire Recalls

Today’s Wall Street Journal cites the dangers of tire recalls.  Consumers need to know that just because you go to the dealership and discover that your specific serial number tires haven't been recalled, you should consider changing them anyway.  Read about the tragedy below suffered by Carolyne Thorne because she did what she thought she was supposed to do regarding a Continental Tire recall notice.  As you will see, things turned out poorly, very poorly.  The entire text of the article is below. Continue Reading...

Wyeth's Prempro

Chalk another victory up for consumers against Wyeth's marketing juggernaut.  A Reno, Nevada jury found Wyeth's Prempro, a hormone-replacement drug, responsible for causing breast cancer in three woman who sued the giant pharmaceuticial manufacturer for damages.  After a four-week trial, the jury said Premarin, an estrogen replacement, and Prempro, a combination of estrogen and progestin, were defective products and found Wyeth was negligent in producing, marketing and selling the drugs.  The jury further orded Wyeth to pay each of the women plaintiffs $43 million in damages.  Fellow Texan, Zoe Littlepage led the plaintiffs to victory.  Continue Reading...

Civil Action Radio Features Interview with Trial Team on Fentanyl Patch $5.5M Verdict

Civil Action Radio features exclusive interview with trial team on Fentanyl patch $5.5 million verdict.
Posted by: The Legal Broadcast Network
July 10, 2007

Last week on Civil Action Radio, guest host Attorney Roberta Ashkin, of the Ashkin Law Office, was joined by the trial lawyer team that won the nationally publicized verdict in the first Federal Fentanyl Patch case. Roberta is a frequent guest and commentator on The Legal Broadcast Network and her commentary on legal issues and areas of interest to trial lawyers can be found exclusively on LBN channels and podcasts.
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Congratulations to the Fentanyl (Duragesic) Trial Team

I want to congratulate the trial team I had the privilege of playing with the past few weeks in Federal Court-Southern District of Florida, West Palm Beach.  Kudos go out to Ike Gulas, Jason Stuckey, Ed Angwin (Ike, Jason and Ed are from the Gulas & Stuckey Law Firm), Jim Orr, and Charles Miller for all of their efforts in the Lee Hendelson v. Johnson & Johnson et al trial. Continue Reading...

Heygood, Orr, Reyes & Bartolomei and Gulas & Stuckey: $5.5 Million Award in First Federal Fentanyl Patch Trial

Jury finds Johnson & Johnson subsidiaries liable in death of 28-year-old
June 19, 2007

The family of a Florida man has won a $5.5 million wrongful death verdict against two subsidiaries of pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson in the nation's first federal trial involving a patch form of the narcotic painkiller fentanyl. Continue Reading...

Jury deciding if pain patch leaked, killing man, 28

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, June 19, 2007

WEST PALM BEACH — Having survived a horrific car accident, Adam Hendelson was killed by medicine that was supposed to help him deal with lingering pain, a federal jury was told Monday.

Instead of releasing a small amount of a powerful drug into his system to deaden his pain, a patch produced by pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson leaked, delivering a fatal dose to the 28-year-old Deerfield Beach resident, attorney Jim Orr said during his closing arguments in U.S. District Court.

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J&J Units Should Pay `Millions' Over Pain Patches, Lawyer Says

Below is the latest press from the Federal Court trial. Ike Gulas, Jason Stuckey, Ed Angwin  Jim Orr, Charles Miller, and I just finished up in the Southern District of Florida, West Palm Beach.

I'll keep you posted on what the jury decides.  Tune in tomorrow.

Angel Reyes
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J&J Ignored Duragesic Patch Defects, Lawyer Says
By Jef Feeley

NEW BRUNSWICK – Johnson & Johnson officials knew some of the company's Duragesic patches for treating pain had defects and failed to warn consumers, a lawyer argued in the first federal product-liability case to go to trial over the devices. Continue Reading...

The Collins & Aikman Debacle - Should Officers and Directors Be Above the Law?

Collins & Aikman Corporation sued its former CEO, David Stockman, and thirteen others connected with the company and a private equity firm Heartland Industrial Partners, LP.  Collins & Aikman accuses the defendants of fraud along with a number of other causes of action.  Collins & Aikman is a venerable Michigan auto parts maker which was taken private by Stockman and Heartland back in 2001.  In 2001, a bet on a U.S. auto parts manufacturer probably seemed like a good one.  Indeed, Stockman, the moppy haired quant guy who led the cheers for Reaganomics back in the 1980’s, was a former Michigan Congressman. That makes him a car guy, right? Continue Reading...

A Trial Attorney's Reply to the Crazy Pants Lawsuit in D.C.

Thanks to Joe Watkins, the President of the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association, for his common sense reply to the D.C. Administrative Law Judge who is suing his dry cleaners over a pair of lost pants... for $65 million:

Reading and hearing about the D.C. Administrative Law Judge who is suing his dry cleaners over a pair of lost pants is distressing, to say the least.  It's obviously ridiculous, but this lawsuit is not only silly -- it's dangerous. Continue Reading...

Is Your High-Low Really a Settlement?

N.Y. Appeals Court Considers High-Low Deals as Settlements
Monday May 7, 2:49 am ET
Tom Perrotta, New York Law Journal

High-low agreements in trials for civil damages constitute settlements and should be enforced as such, an appeals court in Brooklyn has ruled in a case of first impression. A unanimous panel of the Appellate Division, 2nd Department, ruling in Cunha v. Shapiro, 2006-07880, further concluded that a plaintiff 
who wants to file a judgment in connection with a high-low agreement must first sign a general release and stipulation of discontinuance, which gives a defendant 21 days to pay an award. Justice Mark C. 
Dillon wrote the opinion. Continue Reading...

Legal Malpractice: The New Tort de Jure?

A soon-to-be-released study by the American Bar Association shows that the number of legal malpractice suits lodged against "white shoe" firms has risen dramatically since 1996. While the case volume is still small, this study represents a costly, long-term problem for large corporate law firms.  As these claims become more and more prevalent, these upscale law firms will find firms such as mine, Heygood, Orr, Reyes & Bartolomei, to be formidable adversaries. Continue Reading...

Partnership Is A Bitch, Especially If You Are Getting Older: Even The Lawyers Should Watch Out For Lawsuits

In what will surely be a trend of things to come, Donald Gross recently sued his former law firm, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld for age discrimination. It seems that 50 is now the end of the road for partners in high powered, fast growing international law firms. What happened to partnership having its perks? Continue Reading...

Non-compete Agreement Ruled No Basis for Damages

Tuesday December 19, 2:52 am ET
Anthony Lin, New York Law Journal

In 2001, New York's Rosenman & Colin acquired the practice of small intellectual property firm Helfgott & Karas, naming one of the latter's founders, Aaron B. Karas, to the position of counsel. Rosenman & Colin itself merged the following year with Chicago's Katten Muchin Zavis, forming the firm now known as Katten Muchin Rosenman. Continue Reading...

UPDATE: Borat on Trial

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Twentieth Century Fox has fired back at the unwitting co-stars in "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan" who have sued to have the hit comedy pulled from theaters, describing their lawsuit as a "fatuous"
attempt to thwart free speech. Continue Reading...

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