$240 MILLION DEFECTIVE MEDICAL DEVICE
Trial attorney Brooks Cutter took a lead role in a nationwide case against Boston Scientific and Guidant following a recall of the manufacturer's pacemakers and cardiac defibrillators. Brooks was appointed to the plaintiffs steering committee for this multidistrict litigation (MDL) and was designated as bellwether trial counsel. He represented more than 5,000 individuals who had defective Guidant cardiac defibrillators and claimed shares of the $240 million fund as part of a 2008 nationwide settlement.
$220 MILLION DEFECTIVE MEDICAL DEVICE — MEDTRONIC SPRINT FIDELIS
Appointed by the federal court to the plaintiffs steering committee in the Medtronic Sprint Fidelis product liability case on behalf of patients injured by defective defibrillator leads, which settled for $220 million.
$23.5 MILLION WHISTLEBLOWER (QUI TAM) — MEDTRONIC INC.
$23.5 million qui tam settlement for government fraud claims brought against Medtronic Inc., one of the world's largest medical device manufacturers, on behalf of one of four whistleblowers.
CLASS ACTION — CSAA
Attorney Brooks Cutter served as co-lead counsel on behalf of a class of policyholders against CSAA for its failure to waive deductibles for its insured.
CONFIDENTIAL SETTLEMENT DEFECTIVE MEDICAL DEVICE — JOHNSON & JOHNSON
Attorney Brooks Cutter was appointed co-lead counsel in the successful resolution of cases against Johnson & Johnson on behalf of over 200 individuals who alleged postoperative infections following the use of defectively manufactured Vicryl sutures.
$7.6 MILLION JURY VERDICT FOR MEDICAL MALPRACTICE — UC DAVIS REGENTS
$7.6 million medical malpractice jury verdict (the largest in Sacramento County) on behalf of a young woman who suffered a spinal cord injury after doctors failed to diagnose a tumor on her spine.
$596,000 JURY VERDICT FOR INJURED MOTORCYCLIST
A San Francisco jury awarded $596,000 to a motorcyclist seriously injured when a car failed to yield the right of way.
REFUNDS FOR MINORS, PARENTS, AND GUARDIANS FOR PURCHASE OF FACEBOOK CREDITS
On May 26, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California approved the settlement of a class action against Facebook involving in-app purchases of Facebook Credits by minor children. The case was maintained on behalf of a class of children who were Facebook users ("child users") below the age of 18 from whose Facebook accounts Facebook Credits were purchased. The case was filed by two minor children through their parents on February 23, 2012. The two children and the class were represented by attorneys Brooks Cutter and John R. Parker of the Cutter Law Firm in Sacramento, California; Daniel B. Edelman of the firm of Katz, Marshall & Banks in Washington, D.C.; and Benjamin Edelman, an associate professor at the Harvard Business School. On December 1, 2014, the Court certified the case as a class action for purposes of declaratory and injunctive relief on behalf of all minor children who were users of Facebook from whose Facebook accounts Facebook Credits were purchased at any time between February 23, 2008 and the date of the certification order, March 10, 2015. At the same time, the Court declined to certify a class action for purposes of class-wide monetary relief.
Facebook defended the claims in part by arguing that kids had received and used the electronic goods they paid for. The court specifically rejected this reasoning, finding that kids are entitled to refunds even for items they used. "Under California law, a minor may "disaffirm all obligations under a contract, even for services previously rendered, without restoring consideration or the value of services rendered to the other party." (MTD Decision at p.14)
Prior to the settlement, Facebook provided an online procedure for refund requests in various specific circumstances such as fraudulent use of a user's account by a third-party. Facebook's refund procedure did not include an option to request a refund on the ground that the purchase was made when the user was a minor.
The settlement requires Facebook to apply refund practices and policies with respect to U.S. minors that comply with the California Family Code.
The settlement further requires Facebook to "add to its refund request form for In-App Purchases for U.S. users a checkbox or substantially similar functionality with accompanying text such that users are able to indicate that the In-App Purchases for which they are seeking a refund was made when the user was minor."
The settlement additionally requires Facebook to "implement a dedicated queue within Facebook to address refund requests in In-App Purchases, made by U.S. Minors subject to verification of minority. The employees staffing the dedicated queue will receive further training regarding how to analyze and process such refund requests in accordance with applicable law."
If you or your minor child were charged for Facebook credits purchased from an account belonging to someone age 17 or younger, you may be entitled to obtain refunds for such purchases through the use of the dedicated queue established by Facebook as a result of the settlement. Both minor account holders and the parents and guardians of such minors are entitled to claim such refunds. The Facebook refund tool is available at https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/830921593618796.