Re: Designation of Rezulin Litigation as a Mass Tort
Accompanying the publication of this Notice to the Bar is a copy of an Order dated April 6, 2000 signed by Chief Justice Deborah T. Poritz. The Order designates all pending and future litigation statewide involving the drug Rezulin as a mass tort and transfers the pretrial management of all such cases to Middlesex County to be handled on a coordinated basis by the Honorable Marina Corodemus with the assistance of Special Master Joyce M. Usiskin.
It is ORDERED that, in the matter of all pending and future litigation relating to the drug Rezulin, all complaints that have been filed in the various counties and that are under case management or in discovery or awaiting case management and discovery are transferred from the county of venue to the Honorable Marina Corodemus of the Superior Court, Law Division, Middlesex County (Vicinage No. 8), effective immediately; and all future complaints of this type, no matter where they might arise are to be filed in Middlesex County (Vicinage No. 8) and assigned to Judge Corodemus for management; and
It is FURTHER ORDERED that venue in all pending Rezulin litigation is transferred to Middlesex County (Vicinage No. 8); and
It is FURTHER ORDERED that Judge Corodemus, with the assistance of Joyce M. Usiskin, Esquire, Special Master, previously appointed with approval of the Chief Justice, oversee all pretrial case management and discovery for such cases and decide when such cases are ready for trial in a venue to be determined; and
It is FURTHER ORDERED that no Rezulin litigation shall be tried except on application to Judge Corodemus for good cause shown; and
It is FURTHER ORDERED, pursuant to N.J. Const. (1947), Art. VI, sec. 2, par. 3, that Rule4:3-2 governing venue in the Superior Court is supplemented and relaxed so that all future complaints of this type, no matter where they might arise, are to be filed in Middlesex County (Vicinage No. 8).
IN RE: REZULIN : SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY
LITIGATION : LAW DIVISION: MIDDLESEX COUNTY
: CIVIL ACTION
: CASE CODE: 246
THIS MATTER having been opened on the court’s own motion in furtherance of the Order of April 6, 2000 signed by Chief Justice Deborah Poritz for the Supreme Court of the State of New Jersey designating this court to centralize and to manage all pending and future cases alleging injuries from the ingestion of rezulin; and
WHEREAS these cases involve several thousand litigants and complex legal and factual issues and may pose an unnecessary burden on litigants and on judicial resources unless managed equitably, efficiently and economically;
IT IS ON THIS 10th DAY OF APRIL, 2000 ORDERED:
1. No complaint filed after the date of this Order shall contain more than one plaintiff or household of related plaintiffs.
2. All such complaints shall contain in the Case Information Statement (ACIS@ Form and displayed in the caption the Case Code # 246 and under Civil Action, the designation Rezulin Litigation, set forth in bold lettering.
3. All new complaints shall be filed and venued in Middlesex County and directed to the Deputy Clerk, Mass Tort Litigation, Middlesex County Courthouse, P.O. Box 2690, One JFK Square, New Brunswick, New Jersey 08903-2690.
4. All complaints to be transferred from the original county of venue shall be packaged and clearly marked Transmitted FileBRezulin LitigationBJudge Corodemus and forwarded to the Office of the County Clerk, Middlesex County at the above address.
5. All answering pleadings, motions shall be stayed until further order of this court.. All defense attorneys in receipt of process or retained by any defendant shall forthwith notify the Special Master Joyce Usiskin and plaintiffs’ counsel by letter as to the party represented and the name(s) of the case(s) involved in that representation.
6. Further, every pleading or motion paper must include a docket number with the notation AMT@after the number for all rezulin litigation.
7. All defense attorneys in receipt of process or retained by any defendant shall forthwith notify Special Master Joyce Usiskin and plaintiffs’ counsel by letter as to the party represented and the name(s) of the case(s) involved in that representation. Such correspondence shall be sent to:Joyce Usiskin, Esq.