Pennsylvania Judge Dismisses Claims in Zimmer Hip Implant Lawsuit
Judge Cathy Bissoon of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania has granted Zimmer Inc.’s motion to dismiss three of the five claims brought against them by plaintiff Mary Horsmon and her Zimmer hip lawyer in a Zimmer hip implant lawsuit. The ruling may affect other Zimmer hip replacement lawsuits proceeding in Pennsylvania.
Plaintiff and Zimmer hip lawyer claim complications with hip implant
When Horsmon and her Zimmer hip lawyer originally filed her Zimmer hip implant lawsuit, they brought five claims against the company: negligence, strict liability, breach of implied warranties, breach of express warranties, and loss of consortium. They filed the Zimmer hip implant lawsuit in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, and the defendants later removed it to the federal court on the basis of diversity jurisdiction.
In May 2006, Horsmon’s Zimmer hip lawyer claims that she was implanted with a Zimmer hip replacement system. She later began to experience hip pain, and in 2009, an x-ray revealed that the screw holding her hip in place was broken, and the hip implant had shifted from its original position. According to her Zimmer hip lawyer, Horsmon had to go through revision surgery so her doctor could remove the broken screw and replace several components of the hip implant.
Three claims dismissed in Zimmer hip implant lawsuit
Two of the claims made by the plaintiff’s Zimmer hip lawyer—liability and breach of implied warranties—were deemed by the judge to be barred by Pennsylvania law. The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania held in 1996 that strict liability claims could not be brought against prescription drug manufacturers because their products are by nature “unavoidably unsafe.” Though the court has not addressed whether or not this applies to medical device manufacturers, several U.S. District Courts have applied the ruling to bar strict liability claims made by a Zimmer hip lawyer against medical device manufacturers.
Another claim originally brought by Horsman’s Zimmer hip lawyer in her Zimmer hip implant lawsuit – Count III, breach of implied warranties — was also dismissed, for similar reasons as the first.
Plaintiff’s Zimmer hip lawyer seeks damages for breach of warranty
Count IV, breach of express warranties, was dismissed for lack of evidence. The plaintiff and her Zimmer hip lawyer alleged in their Zimmer hip implant lawsuit complaint that the defendants warranted the implant system was safe and effective.
Pennsylvania law requires that the seller make an affirmation or promise to the buyer to create the express warranty, and in this case, Judge Bissoon ruled that the Zimmer hip implant lawsuit plaintiff and her Zimmer hip lawyer failed to provide any particular “affirmation of fact or promise” that would infer the defendants expressly warranted their products were safe.
Zimmer hip implant lawsuit still proceeding on two counts
Despite these dismissals, which could have an impact on rulings in future Zimmer hip replacement lawsuits, Horsmon and her Zimmer hip lawyer will continue to proceed with this Zimmer hip implant lawsuit on two counts: negligence and loss of consortium.