Pfizer Inc. : St. Louis-based Carey, Danis & Lowe Announces Suit Against the Maker of Zoloft Sent Back to St. Louis Circuit Court
04/11/2012| 05:58pm US/Eastern
Pfizer's attempt to litigate lawsuit in federal court rebuffed
St. Louis-based law firm Carey, Danis & Lowe announces a lawsuit against
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE), maker of the antidepressant drug Zoloft, that
was originally filed in St. Louis Circuit Court then removed to federal
court by the drugmaker, has been ordered back to the state court.
The lawsuit, Shainyah Lancaster, et al. v. Pfizer, Inc., cause
no. 1222-CC00766, was filed on Feb. 2 in St. Louis Circuit Court on
behalf of 21 children born with defects after their mothers were
prescribed Zoloft while pregnant. The suit was brought on behalf of the
plaintiffs by the law firms of Carey,
Danis & Lowe; Matthews
& Associates; Freese
& Goss; and Clark,
Burnett, Love & Lee.
On March 8, Pfizer removed the case to the U.S. District Court for the
Eastern District of Missouri alleging that diversity of citizenship
existed between the plaintiffs and the defendant. The lawyers
representing the plaintiffs opposed the effort to remove the case to
federal court. (S.L., et al. v. Pfizer, Inc., Case 4:12-cv-00420).
On April 4, U.S. District Judge Carol E. Jackson sided with the
plaintiffs and ruled that the federal court did not have jurisdiction
over the lawsuit because complete diversity of citizenship did not
exist, granted the plaintiffs' motion to remand and sent the case back
to St. Louis Circuit Court for further proceedings.
Zoloft (generic name sertraline) belongs to a class of drugs known as
selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs. The suit notes that
SSRIs have been found to cause severe birth defects in the children of
women who were prescribed the drug while pregnant and alleges that
Pfizer knew or should have known that children born to mothers who had
taken SSRIs during pregnancy had a greater risk of congenital birth
defects and that despite knowing that physicians were prescribing Zoloft
to women of childbearing age, Pfizer failed to adequately warn the
medical community and the public of the danger.
The lawsuit asserts state law claims against Pfizer of negligence;
negligence of pharmacovigilance, which requires Pfizer to monitor safety
data for its drugs; strict liability; negligent design; failure to warn;
and fraud. The suit seeks actual and punitive damages.
Founded in 1995, Carey, Danis & Lowe has offices in Missouri and
Illinois. The firm handles personal injury, pharmaceutical liability,
product liability, medical malpractice, class action and commercial
cases throughout the United States.
Carey, Danis & Lowe
Jeffrey J. Lowe, 800-721-2519
Shoemake Doles, 800-721-2519
© Business Wire 2012