Personal Injury

Guidant Defibrillators

Result: $240 million settlement
Year: 2008

In re Guidant Implantable Defibrillators Products Liability Litigation

Lieff Cabraser serves on the Plaintiffs’ Lead Counsel Committee in litigation in federal court arising out of the recall of Guidant cardiac defibrillators implanted in patients because of potential malfunctions in the devices. At the time of the recall, Guidant admitted it was aware of 43 reports of device failures, and two patient deaths.

Guidant subsequently acknowledged that the actual rate of failure may be higher than the reported rate and that the number of associated deaths may be underreported, since implantable cardio-defibrillators are not routinely evaluated after death. In January 2008, the parties reached a global settlement of the action. Guidant’s settlements of defibrillator-related claims will total $240 million.