Personal Injury

Dow Corning Bankruptcy

Result: Over 100,000 women have received settlement awards
Year: 1995

Dow Corning Bankruptcy

Lieff Cabraser has been recognized by U.S. News, Best Lawyers, and the National Law Journal as one of the top plaintiffs’ law firms in the nation. You can contact us by completing the contact form below or calling us toll-free at 1 800-541-7358.

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May 9, 2018 Update

RE: SETTLEMENT FACILITY — FINAL DEADLINE TO FILE ALL CLAIMS IN CLASSES 5, 6.1, AND 6.2

The Settlement Facility (claims office) will permanently close to ALL CLAIMS in the Dow Corning (now Dow Silicones Corp) settlement on June 3, 2019. This includes:

Expedited Release Payments — if you do not have a Disease claim, you can apply for an Expedited Release Payment of $2,000 (Class 5 — U.S. citizens/permanent residents). To qualify, you must submit two forms: 1) the Proof of Manufacturer Form and supporting documents that show you have or had a Dow Corning breast implant; and 2) the Expedited Release / Disease claim form (this is a combined form. Check Box 2A, then sign and return this and the Proof of Manufacturer form on or before June 3, 2019.

Disease Payments — there are 9 eligible diseases and conditions that you can apply for: they are listed in the following order on the claim form:

  • Atypical Connective Tissue Disease (ACTD), or
  • Atypical Neurological Disease (ANDS), or
  • Primary Sjogren’s Syndrome, or
  • Mixed Connective Tissue Disease / Overlap Syndrome, or
  • Systemic Scleroderma, or
  • Systemic Lupus, or
  • Polymyositis, or
  • Dermatomyositis, or
  • General Connective Tissue Symptoms.

Most claimants have been approved for Atypical Connective Tissue Disease (ACTD).

To qualify for a Disease Payment, you must submit two forms: 1) the Proof of Manufacturer Form and supporting documents that show you have or had a Dow Corning breast implant, and 2) the Expedited Release / Disease claim form and supporting medical records that meet the disease and disability or severity criteria for the disease you are applying for. You must check only ONE of the 9 diseases listed above on the form or the Settlement Facility will return the form to you and will not review your claim.

Disease Claimant Information Guide — this also contains detailed Q&As on the disease and disability / severity levels. It is available on the tortcomm.org website.

SFDCT Q&Asyou can review the Q&As about the closing of the SFDCT here.

NO LATE CLAIMS WILL BE ALLOWED.

RE: INCREASED SEVERITY DISEASE PAYMENTS

If you have an approved Disease, you can apply for an Increased Severity Disease Payment. The deadline to do this is June 3, 2019.

If your original Disease claim was approved in Disease Option 1 (such as ACTD), then you can only apply for an Increased Severity Payment in Disease Option 1. You cannot move to Disease Option 2. Also, to qualify, your Increased Severity claim must now meet the Level A requirement. For example, if you had an approved ACTD claim at Level C (35% disability), the only way you can recover for Increased Severity for Disease Option 1 is if you meet the criteria for Level A (100% disability or death). Claimants are paid the difference between their original award and the new Level A award. There is a cap of $15 million for all approved Increased Severity claims in Disease Option 1. For more information on this, review the Disease guidelines on the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) website.

If your original Disease claim was approved in Disease Option 2, then you can only apply for an Increased Severity Payment in Disease Option 2. You do not need to meet the Level A criteria for this Increased Severity claim. Any upward movement is allowed. For example, if you were previously approved for Disease Option 2 Lupus Level C, you can qualify for Increased Severity if you now meet the criteria for either Level A or B. Claimants are paid the difference between their original award and the new award. Approved Increased Severity claims in Disease Option 2 do not have a capped amount for all approved claims.

You do not need a claim form to submit an Increased Severity claim. You can mail your documents to the SF-DCT and request an Increased Severity review. YOU MUST FIRST HAVE AN APPROVED DISEASE CLAIM TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR AN INCREASED SEVERITY REVIEW.

RE: STATUS OF PREMIUM PAYMENTS

Dow Corning’s Motion to Stay Issuance of Partial Premium Payments — the motion remains pending before the District Court. We do not know when the court will rule, but until it does, the SF-DCT will not issue the partial premium payments.

Dow Corning’s Appeal to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals on the Partial Premium Payment Order — Dow Corning — now called Dow Silicones Corp. — filed its brief on April 2, 2018. The CAC responded with its brief, filed on May 1, and asked the Court of Appeals to uphold the court’s order. In other words, the CAC supports the order that authorized the partial Premium Payments to be made. A date for oral argument has not been set. We do not know when the Court of Appeals will rule.

Copies of all briefs are on the CAC website at www.tortcomm.org.

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March 15, 2017 Update

RE: FINAL DEADLINE TO FILE A CLAIM – JUNE 3, 2019

The FINAL deadline to file a claim for either Disease or Expedited Release is June 3, 2019. After this date, the Dow Corning Settlement Facility offices will review timely claims, then permanently close to all new claims.

We urge everyone to mail the documents to the Settlement Facility so that they are RECEIVED by the Settlement Facility by June 3, 2019 and/or that you send your forms and documents by certified mail or an overnight service so that you can prove that they were mailed on time. Many claimants have been denied benefits because they mailed their forms in late.

To submit a claim for Expedited Release OR Disease, you need to send the following forms and documents to the Settlement Facility:

  • A signed, completed Proof of Manufacture form along with medical records or other acceptable proof that established that you have or had a Dow Corning breast implant. You can find Proof of Manufacturer forms here: http://www.tortcomm.org/sfdct_forms.shtml
  • A signed, completed Expedited Release form OR a Disease form with medical records and other documents that meet the Plan criteria. Please note that the deadline listed on the claim form was extended. The deadline to apply for Expedited Release is now June 3, 2019. Links to the Class 5, 6.1, and 6.2 Expedited Release or Disease FORM are on this page: http://www.tortcomm.org/sfdct_forms.shtml

Women in Class 5 (U.S.) who have a Dow Corning breast implant but who do not have a Disease or do NOT intend to pursue a Disease claim can receive $2,000 NOW by completing the Expedited Release / Disease claim form. Payment can be issued immediately (within 30 days). A link to the claim form is above.

RE: INCREASED SEVERITY DISEASE PAYMENTS

If you have an approved Disease, you can apply for an Increased Severity Disease Payment. The deadline to do this is June 3, 2019.

If your original Disease claim was approved in Disease Option 1 (such as ACTD), then you can only apply for an Increased Severity Payment in Disease Option 1. You cannot move to Disease Option 2. Also, to qualify, your Increased Severity claim must now meet the Level A requirement. For example, if you had an approved ACTD claim at Level C (35% disability), the only way you can recover for Increased Severity for Disease Option 1 is if you meet the criteria for Level A (100% disability or death). Claimants are paid the difference between their original award and the new Level A award. There is a cap of $15 million for all approved Increased Severity claims in Disease Option 1. For more information on this, review the Disease guidelines on the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) website at: http://www.tortcomm.org/diseaseclaims.shtml

If your original Disease claim was approved in Disease Option 2, then you can only apply for an Increased Severity Payment in Disease Option 2. You do not need to meet the Level A criteria for this Increased Severity claim. Any upward movement is allowed. For example, if you were previously approved for Disease Option 2 Lupus Level C, you can qualify for Increased Severity if you now meet the criteria for either Level A or B. Claimants are paid the difference between their original award and the new award. Approved Increased Severity claims in Disease Option 2 do not have a capped amount for all approved claims.

You do not need a claim form to submit an Increased Severity claim. You can mail your documents to the SF-DCT and request an Increased Severity review. YOU MUST FIRST HAVE AN APPROVED DISEASE CLAIM TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR AN INCREASED SEVERITY REVIEW.

RE: STATUS OF FINANCE COMMITTEE’S MOTON ON PREMIUM PAYMENTS

The Claimants’ Advisory Committee submitted its brief in support of the Finance Committee’s recommendation to resume paying the initial 50% Partial Premium Payments. If approved, this 50% would be paid to claimants who have not received their 50% Partial Premium Payment yet. Copies of the briefs are on the CAC website at www.tortcomm.org. Dow Corning filed a brief opposing the recommendation. Their brief is also on the aforementioned website. A hearing is scheduled for March 23rd in Detroit. We do not expect the Court to rule at this hearing. It is oral argument only. We are hopeful that the Court will rule sometime before this summer. We will continue you update you in our newsletters and on our website.

RE: EXPLANT ASSISTANCE

The Dow Corning Settlement Fund is closed to Explant and Explant Assistance claims. The deadline to file a claim was June 1, 2014. This means that if you did not have your Dow Corning breast implants removed by this date, there are unfortunately NO explant benefits available to you from the Settlement Facility. The deadline to file a Rupture claim has also passed and new claims are not accepted.

The Common Benefit Fund – which is not affiliated with the Dow Corning Settlement Fund – may be able to help. If you need financial help getting your breast implants removed, contact the Common Benefit Fund at jcondra@oplc.org to see if you qualify for any assistance.
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January 4, 2017 Update

RE: STATUS OF PREMIUM PAYMENTS

On December 30, 2016, the Finance Committee filed a motion with the District Court recommending that it approve 50% Premium Payments to women who have or had Dow Corning breast implants (Classes 5 and 6) who have an approved Disease and/or Rupture claim, AND to approved Option 2 Disease claimants who successfully document an Increased Severity disease claim, AND to claims in Class 16 (Dow Chemical claims). If approved, this would allow claimants who did not previously receive their 50% Premium Payment to be paid, plus it would allow claimants in Disease Option 2 to be paid for approved Increased Severity claims.

Claimants who have already received a 50% Premium Payment would NOT receive an additional Premium Payment for their Disease and/or Rupture claim at this time UNLESS they also have an approved Disease Option 2 Increased Severity claim.

We expect Dow Corning to oppose this recommendation. Both parties will be allowed to submit a brief to the District Court, and a hearing will be held in March. We are hopeful that the District Court will rule quickly. HOWEVER, even if the District Court approves the 50% Premium Payments, we expect Dow Corning to appeal once again to the Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit.

The Finance Committee did NOT recommend paying 50% Premium Payments to those who have already received a 50% Premium Payment. It is likely that this final Premium Payment will be made at or near the end of the Settlement Plan in 2019 after all claims have been processed.

A copy of the Finance Committee’s motion is posted on the CAC website, www.tortcomm.org under the heading “Premium Payment Issues.” We will post all other briefings there as they are filed.
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September 28, 2016 Update

September 28, 2016 Update

RE: STATUS OF PREMIUM PAYMENTS

At this time, we do not have any news on the issue of Premium Payments. This matter is currently under discussion between the parties and Finance Committee. The next step would be for the Finance Committee to file a motion with the District Court making a recommendation to pay Premium Payments. We don’t know when this motion will be filed or how long this process might take.

RE: CLAIMS IN THE DOW SETTLEMENT

If you have an approved Dow Corning breast implant, you can apply for the $2,000 Expedited Release claim (US Claimants / Class 5; claimants in Class 6.1 and 6.2 are also eligible but are paid slightly different amounts). You can apply for the Expedited Release Payment anytime before June 3, 2019 by submitting the Disease or Expedited Release claim form. If you accept the Expedited Release Payment, this means that you cannot file or receive payment for a Disease claim.

The final deadline to file a claim for a Disease or an Expedited Release benefit is June 3, 2019. This is less than 3 years away. Our experience shows that it will take you time to compile your Disease claim, so we urge everyone to NOT WAIT until it gets close to file a Disease claim. The CAC has information on its website to help guide claimants through the necessary documents and symptoms a claimant will need to qualify for a Disease claim: www.tortcomm.org/diseaseclaims.shtml.



October 1, 2015 Update

October 1, 2015 Update

RE: CLASS 7 MATERIALS CLAIMS IN THE DOW SETTLEMENT

The October 15, 2015 hearing in Detroit, Michigan at 11am ET has been re-scheduled to October 20, 2015. The Court will hear arguments from the CAC, Dow Corning, and the Objectors on the proposed Consent Order regarding distribution of Class 7 funds. Objectors must appear at this hearing or the Court may deny their objections with prejudice.

Sometime after October 20, 2015, the District Court will issue an opinion and Order on the proposed Consent Order. Note, the Court is not under any timetable or deadline to issue a ruling on the Objections heard at the October 20, 2015 hearing. Please remember that Class 7 claims cannot be paid until the Court has ruled and the Consent Order is entered by the Court.



August 12, 2015 Update

August 12, 2015 Update

RE: CLASS 7 MATERIALS CLAIMS IN THE DOW SETTLEMENT

The July 27, 2015 deadline to file objections to the proposed Class 7 Consent Order re: distribution of class 7 funds has now passed. We have been informed that the court received letters and other filings (deemed to be “Objections”) in response to the proposed Consent Order, therefore, the court cannot enter the Consent Order until all objections have been handled. The end result is that no claims in Class 7 will be paid at this time.

The District Court has approved a Scheduling Order to handle the various filings submitted to the court, and those who filed objections will receive a copy of this Scheduling Order. There are the deadlines:

  • September 15, 2015: deadline for the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) and Dow corning to file a response to the objections.
  • October 2, 2015: deadline for Objectors to file a Reply to the response filed by the CAC and Dow Corning.
  • October 15, 2015: hearing in Detroit, Michigan at 11am ET. The Court will hear arguments form the CAC, Dow Corning, and the Objectors on the proposed Consent Order. Objectors must appear at this hearing or the court may deny that objection with prejudice.

Sometime after October 15, 2015, the District Court will issue an opinion and Order on the proposed Consent Order. There is no way for Lieff Cabraser Heimann and Bernstein or for the SF-DCT to know WHEN the court will issue a ruling. We will only find out once the ruling is issued. Please note, Class 7 claims cannot be paid until the Court has ruled and the Consent Order is entered by the Court.

Also, please remember that all Class 7 claimants received the SF-DCT letter with the Notice of Proposed Order, including those claimants who are not actually eligible to receive any Class 7 benefits due to the marshaling requirement. We understand that this has been causing some confusion, therefore, if you are not sure of your status in the Class 7 and whether you may be eligible for a payment from the Class 7 Fund, you can either contact the SF-DCT directly at their toll-free number: 1-866-874-6099, or you can go to the SF-DCT website at www.sfdct.com then clicking on “Class 7 Claims” at the bottom of the left column. This will bring you to the “Class 7-Silicone Gel Breast Implant Fund” page on which you can type in your SID number in the box, and by clicking “search”, it will pull up the status of your claim.



June 30, 2015 Update

June 30, 2015 Update

RE: CLASS 7 MATERIALS CLAIMS IN THE DOW SETTLEMENT

On May 22, 2015, the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) filed a proposed Consent Order with the District Court to seek approval to begin distribution of class 7 Materials Claim payments. The Court approved the Notice for the proposed Consent Order on June 2, 2015, and the Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (SF-DCT) mailed out a Notice to all class 7 claimants (whether they have been approved for payment or not) on June 12, 2015.

If you are a claimant registered in the Dow Settlement and you did not receive your Notice, it most probably means that the SF-DCT does not have your current address. Therefore, we recommend that you contact the SF-DCT immediately and provide them with your new address (or your claim may be put on hold). The toll-free number for the SF-DCT is 1-866-874-6099, and they are open from 9AM to 4PM Central Time; the SF-DCT is located in Houston, TX.

You can also check the status of your class 7 claim online by going to the SF-DCT website at sfdct.com and clicking on “Class 7 Claims” in the left column. This will bring you to the “Class 7-Silicone Gel Breast Implant Fund” page and, by typing in your SID number and clicking “search”, you will get a message regarding the status of your class 7 claim. (The SID number is your personal identification number in the SF-DCT so they don’t have to use your Social Security Number (SSN) for identification, thus protecting your privacy. If you did not receive a Notice and do not have your SID number, you can call the SF-DCT and by providing them with your SSN, the SF-DCT can look you up, provide you with your SID number, and/or give you the status of your claim). Alternatively, you can e-mail the SF-DCT at info@sfdct.com for information regarding your claim.

On the SF-DCT home page, you will also be able to access a copy of the Notice Regarding Class 7 Consent Order and of the Consent Order To Establish Guidelines For Distributions From The Class 7 Silicone Material Claimants’ Fund. There is a summary on pages 2-3 in the Notice of Proposed Order which covers all the different categories of class 7 claims and whether each one is eligible for payment or not. If you are not an LCHB client, please contact the SF-DCT directly at 1-866-874-6099 for information regarding your particular claim.

To note is that now there is a 45-day period (beginning on the date of the Notice i.e. June 12, 2015), during which attorneys and claimants can object to the Proposed Order. If no objections are made, then the process can move ahead and claimants with approved class 7 claims will be paid.

RE: STATUS OF PREMIUM PAYMENTS

We have no news at this time on the status of Premium Payments. The Court of Appeals’ ruling on January 27, 2015 is final, and as of that date, all Partial Premium Payments have been stopped. Some of you received the Partial Premium Payment on your Rupture and/or Disease Claim(s) prior to the Court of Appeals’ ruling; others did not receive any Partial Premium Payment yet. The Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) has indicated that, in the fall of 2015, it expects to receive an update on the findings of the Independent Assessor and the Finance Committee regarding the availability of funds in the future. We will post an update on the status of Premium Payments as soon as we receive any news from the CAC.



May 6, 2015 Update

May 6, 2015 Update

TWO NEW EXPLANT ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS IN THE MDL-926 COMMON BENEFIT TRUST

(1) MDL-926 Explant Financial Assistance Program: this is to provide financial assistance to eligible women who need to have at least one of their silicone gel-filled or double lumen type breast implants removed. Implant(s) must have been implanted before June 1, 1993. This assistance will be in the form of a direct payment of up to $5,000 to the plastic surgeon who performs the implant removal surgery. Please be advised that the funds available for this Program are limited, and the Program may be modified or terminated at any time.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Program can be found at the following website: www.oplc.org. From this website, you can also access the “Notice of Interest” form which will list the eight (8) requirements for eligibility in the Program. Alternatively, you can request the “Notice of Interest” form from the Program Administrator, James J. Condra, who can be reached at (205) 252-6784, or by e-mail at jcondra@oplc.org. The deadline for submission of the “Notice of Interest” form is December 31, 2015, and you can only submit the form if you satisfy all eight (8) of the requirements.

(2) The Insurance Coverage Assistance Program: this is a program that will provide advice and assistance to claimants (including those who have or may be eligible for Medicare, Medicaid, or private insurance coverage) who may need help accessing their insurance coverage for breast implant removal. The program is to be operated by the National Center for Health Research, a consumer-oriented non-profit group in Washington, D.C.

The National Center currently operates the breastimplantinfo.org website. You can e-mail them at info@breastimplantinfo.org, or by calling them at (202) 223-4000 for further information about the Insurance Coverage Assistance Program.

PLEASE NOTE: Neither of these programs is affiliated with the Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (SF-DCT) or the Settlement Plan. Therefore, do not send any documents to the SF-DCT, and because the deadline to submit an Explant Claim in the Dow Settlement expired on June 2, 2014, the Insurance Coverage Assistance Program cannot help claimants with their claims in the Dow Corning Settlement Plan.

Because these programs are not part of the Dow Settlement, please be advised that Lieff Cabraser Heimann and Bernstein is only providing this information as a courtesy. If you have any additional questions regarding the MDL-926 Explant Financial Assistance Program, please contact the Program Administrator, James J. Condra, and for the Insurance Coverage Assistance Program, please contact the National Center for Health Research.



February 2015 Update - Dow Settlement

February 2015 Update – Dow Settlement

REGARDING PREMIUM PAYMENTS TO CLASS 5 CLAIMANTS: On March 31, 2014, the Court of Appeals denied Dow Corning’s Motion to Stay (stop) the Partial Premium Payments from being issued. The Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (SF-DCT), therefore, immediately began to send out award letters, followed by the partial Premium Payment checks (50% of the Premium Payment amount) to eligible Dow Corning breast implant claimants. We were informed by the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) that, as of January 27, 2015, the SF-DCT had issued most of the partial Premium Payments, for a total of $98,445,984 to 44,451 claimants.

On January 27, 2015, however, the Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit heard an appeal from Dow Corning and reversed the Court’s previous approval of partial Premium Payments, sending the issue Back to Judge Hood for further proceedings. As a result, the SF-DCT has stopped issuing all partial Premium Payments, including checks returned for re-issue. This means that, (1) if you have not already received a partial Premium Payment check, you will not receive one until the District Court and/or the Court of Appeals authorizes it; (2) if you returned a partial Premium Payment check to the SF-DCT for any reason (i.e. to request that the check be made payable to a deceased claimant’s estate, to issue a check to a new name, etc.), the SF-DCT will not re-issue the check at this time; (3) if you received an award letter for a partial Premium Payment, but then never received the check because it was lost in the mail, or if the check has expired, you should notify the SF-DCT of this, but they will not re-issue a new check to you at this time. Therefore, if you have received a partial Premium Payment check, we strongly recommend that it be cashed immediately, since it is our understanding that the SF-DCT will honor existing checks that were issued.

In light of this development, if claimants have received and cashed their 50% partial Premium Payment checks (and would potentially be due to receive the other 50% of the Premium Payment for their Rupture and/or Disease claims), please be advised that we do not know if and when the SF-DCT will be able to issue the remainder of the Premium Payments. We ask our clients to please inform us right away of any changes to their contact information (mailing address and/or telephone number) so that there is no delay in reaching you if and when the SF-DCT resumes distribution of partial Premium Payments. If you are not an Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein client, please inform the SF-DCT directly of any changes to your contact information.

On February 10, 2015, the CAC filed a petition for a rehearing on this ruling. At this time, we do not know if the Court of Appeals will accept the request.

REGARDING CLASS 7 MATERIALS CLAIMS: We still do not know when the SF-DCT will begin to issue payments to Class 7 claimants. The last information we received from the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) in the fall of 2014 was that they were hoping to file a motion at the end of 2014, or the beginning of 2015, asking for Court approval to allow the SF-DCT to start distribution of Class 7 payments. To our knowledge, this motion has not yet been filed.

REGARDING TISSUE EXPANDER CLAIMANTS: The Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) informed us in August 2014 that the Court of Appeals issued an Order approving the District Court’s earlier ruling that tissue expanders are considered “breast implants” and, therefore, are eligible for benefits in the Dow Settlement. If you have acceptable proof of manufacturer of implantation with a Dow Corning tissue expander, you have until the deadline date of 06/03/2019 to file a Disease Claim or an Expedited Release Claim. If you had already applied for the Expedited Release prior to last year’s Court ruling, and now have medical records to support a Disease Claim instead, and if you receive the $2,000 Expedited Release check from the SF-DCT, you can return the Expedited Release check to the SF-DCT within 60 (sixty) days from the date on the check and indicate in your cover letter that you are going to apply for a Disease Claim. If you do not get approved for a Disease Claim and/or cannot cure any deficiencies found in your claim, the SF-DCT will re-issue the Expedited Release check to you.

DEADLINE REMINDERS: The deadlines to submit to the SF-DCT a Class 5 Rupture Claim and/or an Explant Claim have both expired; the deadline to file a Class 7 Materials Claim has also expired. The only remaining claim that can be filed in the Dow Settlement is either a Class 5 Disease Claim or an Expedited Release Claim, and the deadline to file is June 3, 2019. Please remember that once you submit a Disease Claim to the SF-DCT, the clock starts ticking, and if there are any deficiencies in your claim, you will have just one year within which to cure the deficiencies or that Disease Claim will be forever barred, and you will have to either apply for a different Disease Claim, or accept the Expedited Release.



April 2014 Update - Dow Settlement

April 2014 Update – Dow Settlement

FINAL REMINDER ABOUT THE EXPLANT DEADLINE: The final deadline to submit an Explant Claim to the SF-DCT is June 2, 2014. If you have not already submitted an Explant Claim, you must submit to the SF-DCT the Explant Claim form signed and with the supporting medical records on or before June 2, 2014. The medical records submitted with your Explant Claim must show that you had your Dow Corning silicone gel breast implants removed (and not replaced with silicone) between December 31, 1990 and June 2, 2014. If you do not submit the signed Explant Claim form with the supporting medical records by this deadline, your Explant Claim will be permanently barred from review and/or payment by the SF-DCT.

GOOD NEWS REGARDING PREMIUM PAYMENTS: We have been informed that on March 31, 2014, the Court of Appeals denied Dow Corning’s Motion to Stay (stop) the Partial Premium Payments from being issued. This means that the SF-DCT will soon begin sending out award letters to those claimants who are eligible for the partial Premium Payments. The award letters will be mailed out on a rolling basis, and the checks will be mailed out approximately two weeks after the award letters are sent. It will take six months or more for the SF-DCT to mail all of the letters and checks so please be patient. Because this is being done on a rolling basis, some of you will receive your award letters and checks sooner than others. The SF-DCT asks that you please do not call them now to ask when you will receive your check. We will update this website when the process is complete so that if you still haven’t received your award letter and check, steps can be taken to check your status with the SF-DCT.

We ask our clients to please inform us right away of any changes to your contact information (mailing address or telephone number) that may have occurred since the last contact we had with you. We will need your new address or telephone number so that there is no delay in reaching you when the award letters and checks arrive. If you are not an LCHB client, please inform the SF-DCT directly of any changes to your contact information.

REGARDING CLASS 7 MATERIALS CLAIMS: We still have no time frame for when the SF-DCT will complete the processing of disputed Class 7 Materials Claims, nor when the SF-DCT will begin to issue payments to Class 7 claimants.

REGARDING TISSUE EXPANDER CLAIMANTS: The Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) informed us that briefing is complete on Dow Corning’s second appeal to the 6th Circuit on the issue of whether tissue expanders are “Breast Implants”. The CAC expects to receive a date for oral argument soon, and we all hope that the Court of Appeals will rule promptly on this appeal, thus paving the way for tissue expander claimants to have their claims reviewed by the SF-DCT.



April 2012 Update - Dow Settlement

April 2012 Update – Dow Settlement

The SF-DCT has moved, and their new address effective April 3, 2012 is:

SF-DCT
3200 SW Freeway, Ste. 1500
Houston, TX 77027

Their telephone number remains the same: 1-866-874-6099.
Their P.O. Box also remains the same: P.O. Box 52429, Houston, TX 77052

Regarding Premium Payments: the matter of if and when the SF-DCT issues premium payments is now under consideration by the Court. We do not know when the Court will issue a ruling. As soon as an order is entered, we will post it on our website and contact any potentially eligible LCHB clients.

Regarding Class 7 Payments: Because some unreviewed Class 7 claims were found during an audit at the SF-DCT, the SF-DCT cannot issue any Class 7 payments until those unreviewed claims are processed and given the one year time period within which to cure deficiencies. As of this date, the SF-DCT cannot predict the exact date when Class 7 payments are going to be made, but it will probably be at least another year before they can issue payments.

REMINDER ABOUT THE EXPLANT DEADLINE: The final deadline to submit an Explant Claim to the SF-DCT is June 2, 2014 . Please remember that you must have acceptable Proof of Manufacturer before you can be considered for the Explant benefit. The Explant benefit is $5,000.00 (five thousand dollars), and in order to qualify for this benefit, you must have your Dow Corning implants removed and not replaced with silicone.

Please keep in mind that it can sometimes take six months or longer to schedule an explant surgery and to obtain the necessary medical records from your surgeon or hospital. Therefore, if you want to apply for this benefit, you should keep this deadline date in mind, and not wait too long to discuss your potential explant surgery with your doctor.



August 10, 2011 Update

August 10, 2011 Update

Revised Settlement Program:

The Revised Settlement Program (RSP) permanently closed on 12/15/10, therefore as of that date, the Claims Office has not been accepting any new claims. However, new disease claims that were received by the Claims Office by the deadline, will be reviewed and if found deficient, those claimants will receive a notification letter and will have one year from the date on their letters to try to cure the deficiencies.

We have been informed by the Claims Office that, because so many claimants filed their disease claims at the last minute, it will probably take the Claims Office until the end of the year before it can complete at least all of the first reviews. The Claims Office asks that claimants please be patient, and that if anyone wishes to find out the status of her own particular claim, she is welcome to call them at 1-800-600-0311; if you are an LCHB client, you can of course call us for information regarding your claim.

Dow Settlement:

The Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (SF-DCT) is current in processing class 5 claims for disease and explant benefits. Reviews of Class 7 disease claims, however, are not all completed yet. Class 7 claims found to be deficient will have one year from the date of their notification letters to try to cure the deficiencies. Therefore, the SF-DCT is not expecting to be able to make payments to class 7 approved claims for another 1-2 years.

With regard to Premium Payments on approved class 5 disease and rupture claims, the latest information we have is that on June 30, 2011, the Finance Committee filed a motion recommending that the Court authorize Premium Payments in the amount of 50%, and that these payments would begin in 2012. However, this does not mean that the Premium Payments will actually be made in 2012, because Dow Corning will most likely file an objection, then the District Court would hold a hearing on the objection, and this may even be followed by an appeal. So basically we do not know how long the process may take before there is a final ruling on whether any Premium Payments can be made, or when they will be made, if ever.

With regard to Increased Severity payments for Disease Option 1 and Disease Option 2, these will be paid when and if the District Court authorizes Premium Payments to be made.

Reminder:

  • deadline to file an Explant Claim (if you have your Dow implants removed and not replaced with silicone) is 6/2/2014;
  • deadline to file either a Disease Claim or an Expedited Release Claim is 6/3/2019.

Joint Plan of Reorganization and Dow Corning Bankruptcy Proceedings

Main Breast Implant Litigation Page

Important Contact Information



April 16, 2010 Update

April 16, 2010 Update

URGENT REMINDER REGARDING THE FINAL DEADLINE IN THE REVISED SETTLEMENT PROGRAM

This is an urgent reminder to claimants with Bristol, Baxter, 3M, or post-84 McGhan implants who are eligible to receive benefits in the Revised Settlement Program (RSP) that the final deadline to file any and all claims is December 15, 2010. This means that the Claims Office for the RSP will not accept submissions of any additional claims after December 15, 2010, and that the RSP will permanently end on that date. Therefore:

  • If you are a “Current Claimant” or an “Other Registrant” and are eligible for, but have not yet filed, a disease claim or an explant claim, you must file your claim(s) with supporting medical records by December 15, 2010.
  • If you are a “Late Registrant” and have not yet filed a Long-Term Disease Claim, you must file your claim with supporting medical records by December 15, 2010 even though you may be eligible for payment only if payments to all “Current Claimants” and “Other Registrants” do not exceed Defendants’ maximum obligations. “Late Registrants” are not eligible for explant benefits.
  • If you are a claimant with post-84 McGhan implants, you may be eligible for reduced amount disease benefits, but not for explant benefits.
  • If you had a Bristol or Baxter silicone gel implant and had submitted to the Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (SF-DCT) a Class 7 Materials Disease Claim, or you have both a Bristol, Baxter or 3M AND a Dow Corning implant, please remember that the SF-DCT will not review your Class 7 Materials Disease Claim or make any additional payment until you first file and settle your disease claim in the RSP (and by the same deadline date of December 15, 2010).
  • Please remember that implant ruptures were only covered in the RSP as part of a Fixed-Amount disease claim, and that the 1996 deadline for filing such claims has long since passed.

If you are not sure of your status in the RSP, you can call the Claims Office at their toll-free number: 1-800-600-0311 and by providing your Social Security Number, they can tell you if you are registered and for what benefits you may still be eligible. If you are not registered in the RSP, you may be able to register as a “Late Registrant”.

If you are a Lieff Cabraser client and have not have received the reminder letters that the Claims Office and/or we sent you regarding this final deadline, please call us right away so that we can discuss your status and file any remaining claims for which you may be eligible before this final deadline expires.



August 2009 Update

August 2009 Update

On August 24, 2009, the Claims Administrator of the SF-DCT issued some changes and notices with regard to its processing of disease claims:

  1. The Claims Office may establish regulations relating to the submission of medical documentation and set reasonable periods for reviews and re-reviews of your Disease Claim in response to a deficiency notice. This is per Annex A 7.09biii of the Settlement Agreement.
  2. The Claims Office will not usually review your submissions in response to a deficiency notice more than twice; however, the Claims Administrator may conduct a third review after the completion of the review of all other Disease Claims. This is also per Annex A 7.09biii of the Settlement Agreement.
  3. If you submit duplicate records and/or information that does not address the deficiencies in your claim on the second re-review, the SF-DCT will not review the claim again, and will instead process the claim for the payment for which you were eligible at the time of the second review – even if the cure deadline has not expired. **Therefore, you should read carefully the Notification of Status letter from the SF-DCT so that you can collect the records that are needed to cure the deficiencies in your claim, and submit them all together to avoid problems with re-reviews. If you don’t understand the deficiencies, the SF-DCT has a Disease Call Specialist with whom you can make an appointment to get clarification. The SF-DCT’s toll free number is 1-866-874-6099.
  4. Review of Option 2 Disease Claims is still backlogged.
  5. In an effort to expedite processing of Option 2 disease claims, the SF-DCT has indicated that it will no longer review Option 2 claims and ACTD Discretionary claims at the same time. This means that the SF-DCT will review your Option 2 claim first and if it is found deficient, you will have a year within which to cure the deficiencies. If you are unable to cure the deficiencies in your Option 2 claim by the cure deadline date, and your claim is not approved for any level of compensation, the SF-DCT will then automatically place your ACTD claim in line for review. You will then have a one year period within which to cure the deficiencies in your ACTD claim.
  6. You can request an ACTD review at any time while the SF-DCT is reviewing your Option 2 claim. Choosing this option will result in two cure deadline dates that could expire at or around the same time.

Please remember that if you receive a Notification of Status letter from the SF-DCT which lists the deficiencies in your claim, you must submit your cure documents to the SF-DCT before the deadline listed in your letter. The SF-DCT will not consider any documents received after the cure deadline.



April 2009 Update

April 2009 Update

5th Anniversary of the Effective Date of the Dow Corning Plan of Reorganization is June 1, 2009, and how this affects option 2 Disease Claims not yet filed

The Dow Settlement officially began on June 1, 2004, and on that “Effective Date”, all deadlines for filing claims in the Dow Settlement went into effect and began to run. The Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (SF-DCT) began reviewing and paying approved claims. The SF-DCT indicates that, as of March 31, 2009, it has paid out over one billion dollars to claimants.

This 5th anniversary date is also very important for any Dow claimant who had qualifying symptoms for an option 2 disease occurring within a 24-month period and documented before June 1, 2004, but hasn’t yet filed an Option 2 Disease Claim. Your deadline for submitting your option 2 Disease Claim based on those qualifying symptoms is June 1, 2009.

In other words, if a claimant had symptoms before June 1, 2004, she can no longer rely on those symptoms if filing a new option 2 disease claim on or after June 1, 2009; the claimant must have new qualifying symptoms. This is because one of the requirements in order to qualify for a Disease Option 2 payment – as stated in the SF-DCT’s Disease Claimant Information Guide, page 14, Q5-2 (2) – is:

“Qualifying findings must have occurred within a single 24-month period within the five (5) years immediately preceding the submission of the claim except that this period is tolled from May 15, 1995 to the Effective Date.”

Therefore, if you have been diagnosed with an option 2 Disease, please be aware of this 24-month/5-year requirement if you haven’t yet filed your option 2 Disease Claim. If you are a Lieff Cabraser client and have symptoms of an option 2 Disease that were documented prior to June 1, 2004, please contact us immediately so we can prepare and submit your claim before June 1, 2009.

Please be aware of this 24-month/5 year requirement going forward, so that if your doctor documents qualifying symptoms for an option 2 disease within a single 24-month period, we can file your option 2 Disease Claim within five (5) years of the documentation of those symptoms.



February 2009 Update

February 2009 Update

Class 5 – Urgent Reminder for Certain ANDS, SLE and ACTD Dow Claimants:

If you previously filed a claim for any of the above diseases, and received a deficiency notice from the SF-DCT, these are the final cure deadlines that apply*:

  • March 2, 2009 – for certain Atypical Neurological Disease Syndrome (ANDS) claims;
  • May 4, 2009 – for certain Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) claims;
  • July 9, 2009 – for certain Atypical Connective Tissue Disease (ACTD) claims.

*if you have any questions regarding your specific cure deadline, contact the SF-DCT at 1-866-874-6099 or at info@sfdct.com.

The deadline to submit either a Class 5 Disease Claim or an Expedited Release is June 3, 2019. The deadline to submit a Class 5 Explant Claim to the SF-DCT is June 2, 2014.

If you had both a Dow implant and a Bristol, Baxter or 3M implant, you must file your Disease Claim (or your Benefits Schedule Options Form selecting Fixed or Long-Term disease benefits) in the Revised Settlement Program (RSP) by the deadline date of December 15, 2010 before the SF-DCT will review your disease claim.

Class 7 Silicone Gel Material Claimants:

  • If you rejected the $3,000 Expedited “Cash-Out” offer and requested a full Disease Claim review by the SF-DCT, please note that no class 7 Disease Claims can be paid until all disease claims have been reviewed and the 1-year time period to cure deficiencies has expired. Payments for class 7 Disease Claims may therefore take several more years to be distributed.
  • If you have not received either the $600 Expedited Release payment or the $3,000 Expedited “Cash-Out” offer, or any Notification of Status for your Class 7 Materials Claim, we advise you to immediately call either your attorney (if you are represented by one), or the SF-DCT at 1-866-874-6099, to make sure they have your current address, and to get status of your claim.

Urgent Reminder for Revised Settlement Program (RSP) Claimants:

The final deadline to submit an Explant Claim and/or a Disease Claim to the RSP Claims Office is December 15, 2010. On that date, the Revised Settlement Program will end permanently and no new claims will be accepted. If you have not received a reminder letter from the Claims Office, we advise you to immediately call either your attorney (if you are represented by one), or the Claims Office at 1-800-600-0311, to make sure they have your current address, and to get status of your claim.

**If you are represented by an attorney, do not sign any forms that the RSP Claims Office may send you until you consult your attorney.



May 2008 Update

May 2008 Update

Class 5, 6.1 and 6.2 Dow Claimants:

There are several pending motions before the court, including the Claimants’ Advisory Committee’s (CAC) motion concerning whether tissue expanders are breast implants eligible for benefits in the SF-DCT, and whether the releases that Dow Corning obtained as part of its Explant Assistance program (from 1992-1995) are valid. For a complete list of the motions that the CAC has pending, you can go to the CAC’s official website at www.tortcomm.org.

At this time, there is no indication as to if, or when, the SF-DCT will make Premium Payments on approved Rupture and/or Disease Claims. The Dow Settlement provides that (1) Premium Payments can be made only after Base Payments and higher priority payments have been or can be paid, and (2) the U.S. District Court is assured that sufficient funds remain to pay other claims as well as the Premium Payments. Therefore, please keep your contact information current with our office so that, if and when Premium Payments are made, we will be able to contact you and provide you with any additional payments you may be eligible to receive.

A reminder that the deadline for NOI claimants to submit Explant and/or Rupture Claims is October 20, 2008. This deadline only applies to classes 5, 6.1 and 6.2 NOI claimants; it does NOT apply to timely filed claimants.

The deadline for submission of an Explant Claim for timely filed claimants is June 2, 2014.

The deadline for submission of either an Expedited Release or a Disease Claim for timely filed claimants is June 3, 2019.

Class 7 Silicone Gel Material Claimants:

  • The SF-DCT is making timely Expedited Release payments of $600. to each class 7 Materials claimant whose class 7 Proof of Manufacturer is accepted;
  • The SF-DCT is offering a quick “Cash-Out” option of $3,000. in lieu of a full review of a claimant’s class 7 Disease Claim, again upon acceptance of the claimant’s Proof of Manufacturer;
  • The SF-DCT expects to complete the Proof of Manufacturer reviews of class 7s by June 2008;
  • The SF-DCT has indicated that it has begun review of Class 7 Disease Claims, but that it may take up to 2-3 years for a full Disease Claim review, and up to 5 years before payments are made.

Revised Settlement Program (RSP) Claimants:

Please remember that the final deadline to submit an Explant Claim and/or a Disease Claim to the RSP Claims Office is December 15, 2010. On that date, the Revised Settlement Program will end permanently.



October 2007 Update

October 2007 Update

In September 2007, the Court approved a settlement by which class 5 and 6 Notice of Intent (NOI) or Conditional claimants will now be allowed to apply for and, if eligible, receive benefits for Explant, Rupture and Expedited Release Claims. This settlement applies ONLY to NOI or Conditional claimants.

Please note that there is a new Explant and Rupture Claim deadline for NOI Claimants ONLY, i.e., October 20, 2008. This means that if you are an NOI or Conditional claimant and want to potentially recover for Explant (if you don’t replace with silicone) and/or Rupture, you must have your Dow Corning breast implant removed and your claim forms submitted to the SFDCT by October 20, 2008. This deadline applies ONLY to NOI or Conditional claimants.

Please also note that, as a result of this settlement, the ExplantAssistance Program (EAP) through the SFDCT is now available to NOI claimants. However, be aware that the shortened Explant Claim deadline of October 20, 2008 (for NOI claimants ONLY) also applies to the filing of an EAP Claim.

Lastly, NOI claimants who are eligible and who want to accept the settlement and have their claims reviewed by the SFDCT as quickly as possible will want to sign and submit an “NOI Settlement Acceptance Form”. This form can be found on the Claimants’ Advisory Committee (CAC) website at www.tortcomm.org. We strongly recommend that, before signing the acceptance form, NOI claimants read the September 11, 2007 section on the CAC Home Page entitled “CAC Position Regarding the NOI Settlement and Consent Order,” which explains why the CAC recommends that NOI claimants accept this settlement and what risks NOI claimants should consider.



August 2007 Update

August 2007 Update

The Claimants’ Advisory Committee” (“CAC”) has announced that there has been a proposed settlement that applies only to “Notice of Intent”, or “NOI” (“Conditional”) claimants. An NOI claimant is one who filed a Notice of Intent or Proof of Claim in the Dow Corning bankruptcy case that was received after November 30, 1999 and before August 30, 2004.

The proposed agreement with Dow Corning will allow NOI claimants who accept the settlement to recover Explant, Rupture and Expedited Release benefits, if they are eligible. Previously, NOI claimants were only eligible for review of their Disease Claims by the Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (“SFDCT”).

The proposed settlement has not yet been approved by the Court, and will not be implemented unless the Court approves it. It is our understanding that if the Court approves the proposed settlement, the SFDCT will send out an NOI settlement package to each NOI claimant or her attorney, if she is represented by counsel.

Please note that there are several important changes in the deadline dates for the Explant and Rupture Claims filed by NOI claimants ONLY:

  • The deadline to file an Explant Claim will be only one year from the date noted in the NOI settlement package.
  • The deadline to file a Rupture Claim will be one year following receipt of the NOI settlement package. This Rupture deadline applies only to NOI claimants. Therefore, if you are an NOI claimant and have ruptured implants, you can still be eligible for a Rupture payment if you have your Dow Corning silicone gel breast implants removed and as long as your supporting medical records prove rupture as defined by the Dow Settlement and are received before the one year deadline.

If you are an NOI claimant and you have any questions regarding this proposed settlement, feel free to contact the Settlement Facility at 1-866-874-6099, or your attorney, if you are represented by counsel.

We will post the Court’s decision regarding this settlement as soon as that information becomes available to us, so please check this website periodically for further information.

CONSUMER ALERT

On November 17, 2006, the FDA approved the marketing of silicone gel breast implants made by Mentor Corp. and Allergan Corp. (formerly Inamed Corp.). Despite this approval, the Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust (“SFDCT”) and the MDL Claims Office for the Revised Settlement Program (“RSP”) will continue to review claims and disburse benefits to all eligible claimants. To obtain the status of your claims in the Dow Settlement, you can contact the SFDCT at 1-866-874-6099. To obtain the status of your claims in the RSP, you can contact the MDL Claims Office at 1-800-600-0311.

Despite the FDA approval of the re-introduction of silicone gel breast implants into the marketplace, the controversy over long-term health impacts is still unresolved. Implants can rupture, and statistics show most will rupture within a few years. The need for surgical removal creates additional risks, scarring, and may result in permanent disfigurement. To express your concerns about their decision, you can contact the FDA at:

Food and Drug Administration
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, Maryland 20857
1-888-INFO-FDA

Further Resources:

National Organization for Women

National Research Center for Women & Families’ Implant Information Project

FDA Breast Implant Resources

Case Background

Since declaring bankruptcy and excluding itself from the original Global Settlement in 1994, Dow Corning has been under the protected shield of bankruptcy. Lengthy negotiations between Dow Corning and the Tort Claimants Committee resulted in the Amended Joint Plan of Reorganization (“the Joint Plan”).

The Joint Plan includes the “settlement” that the attorneys for breast implant claimants negotiated with Dow Corning in the context of the bankruptcy proceedings.

The Joint Plan was approved by the majority of claimants, and has been approved by the bankruptcy court, and, on November 13, 2000, was affirmed by the district court.

If you are UNSURE whether or not you have already registered your bankruptcy claim with DATICON SYSTEMS, you may still be able to file a late claim, which is called a Rule 3005 Notice of Intent to File, but you need to call 713-225-7200 IMMEDIATELY to confirm your registration.

Summary of the Joint Plan

The amount which has been set aside to fund the Joint Plan totals approximately $3.2 billion. Benefits to Dow Corning product recipients will range from approximately $2,000 for an expedited release payment to $250,000 for the highest level of disease compensation. The exact amount of claimants who will make a claim against this fund is currently unknown, but estimates are that more than 600,000 claims have already been filed.

It is likely that there will be different benefits available to claimants, including:

  1. A $ 5,000 payment for the removal of DOW implants;
  2. A rupture payment for DOW implants which is approximately $25,000;
  3. A disease “grid” that will provide benefits on a graded scale, ranging between $12,000 and $250,000; and
  4. A Silicone Materials Claim for claimants who received implants manufactured by Bristol, Baxter, Bioplasty, Cox-Uphoff or Mentor.

Unfortunately, while the Joint Plan received overwhelming claimant support, and the approval of the bankruptcy court, due to filing appeals in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals by several objectors, the claims process was postponed pending resolution of the appeals.



April 2007 Update

April 2007 Update

We have just been informed that the Claims Administrator of the SFDCT has extended the deadline to submit the claim form for the Expedited Release option for classes 5, 6.1 and 6.2. The deadline was June 1, 2007. This date has now been extended to June 1, 2019. What this means is that, if you are a class 5, 6.1 or 6.2 and have not already elected the Disease or Expedited Release Option, you do not have to decide by June 1, 2007 whether you would like to accept the Expedited Release Payment in lieu of a Disease Claim. The deadline to file for either the Expedited Release or the Disease Claim is now the same, i.e., June 3, 2019.



June 2006 Update

June 2006 Update

The deadline of June 1, 2006 for submission of class 5 Rupture Claims (for Dow Corning silicone gel breast implants), for class 7 Materials Claims (for both Expedited Release or Disease), for class 9 (for Dow Corning ‘other products’), for class 6 (for Foreign Claimants with Dow Corning breast implants), and for class 10 (for Foreign Claimants with Dow Corning ‘other products’) has now passed.

Therefore, any of the above-listed claims received after this date will not be accepted by the SFDCT. There are no exceptions or extensions of this deadline, except for class 5 claimants who had their ruptured Dow Corning silicone gel breast implants removed within 90 days immediately before the June 1, 2006 deadline. They will have until July 1, 2006 to submit to the SFDCT their Rupture Claim Form and corresponding medical records.

The next deadline to keep in mind is June 1, 2007 for Expedited Release Claims for class 5, if you do not qualify for a Disease Claim. If you wish to authorize us to file your Expedited Release Claim, please send us your dated and signed Expedited Release Response Form (previously sent to all LCHB class 5 claimants). If you did not receive this form, you can contact us for another form.

**Please remember that if you accept the Expedited Release payment, you can no longer apply for a Disease Claim now or at any time in the future, but you may still be eligible for an Explant Claim if (1) you have not already received an Explant benefit, and (2) you do not replace with silicone, and (3) you file before the deadline date of June 2, 2014.

With regard to the processing and payment of class 5 claims by the SFDCT, please be advised that, although the SFDCT has improved their system of processing and payment of claims, there may still be long wait times for notification of status of your claims. For class 5 Explant and Rupture Claims, the estimated wait time is 4-6 months, though this may change due to the anticipated influx of Explant and Rupture Claims submitted for the June 1, 2006 deadline. Class 5 Disease Claims may take a year or longer to be reviewed and processed by the SFDCT. Class 5 Expedited Release Claims seem to be getting paid a bit faster, i.e., within 2-3 months of submission. Please remember these estimates are given to us by the SFDCT directly.

With regard to class 7 Materials Claims and class 9 ‘other products’ claims, the SFDCT has indicated that claimants will not receive a payment from either of these two funds in this calendar year. In fact, the SFDCT has not yet announced what the Expedited Release payments will be for class 7 Materials claimants, but we will try to post that information here as soon as it becomes available to us.

If you have access to the Internet and would like to check on the status of your claim(s), the SFDCT Claimant Web Interface is operational. In order to access your claim information, please contact the SFDCT at info@sfdct.com or 1-866-874-6099 to request a copy of the Web access Authorization Form. The form requires a valid signature and your email address. SFDCT will then provide you with a username and password to use when accessing your claim information. Of course, Lieff Cabraser will be keeping tabs on all of our outstanding client claims, and we will call you as soon as we get notification of status for your claim(s).

You can also log on to the SFDCT official website at www.dcsettlement.com for basic information and responses to “Frequently Asked Questions” that are written by the SFDCT, and also for updates by the SFDCT Claims Administrator. You may also speak with a claims representative at the SFDCT at (866) 874-6099.

Because deadlines are now running and we may need to speak with you regarding your claim(s) or we may need you to sign paperwork relating to your claim(s), we would like to remind you to please keep us updated with your most-current contact information and to please reply to all telephone calls and correspondence from us as soon as practical. If you have recently moved — please be sure to inform us of your updated address and contact information.

Remaining deadlines to keep in mind:

Type of Deadline Deadline
Breast Implant Expedited Release Claim Deadline June 1, 2007
Breast Implant Explant and Explant Assistance Claim Deadline for Class 5 June 2, 2014 (Next Business Day)
Breast Implant Disease Option Claim Deadline for Class 5 June 3, 2019 (Next Business Day)
Class 6.2, Foreign Claimants, Option 3 Claim Deadline June 3, 2019 (Next Business Day)

Please check back from time to time for further updates regarding our progress within the claims process. We look forward to continuing to work with you throughout this claims administration process. (Click here to contact us with individual questions or concerns.)



2005 Update

2005 Update

The Effective Date in the Dow Bankruptcy proceedings was declared to be June 1, 2004, therefore the claims process is officially underway. There are some important things for breast implants recipients with prospective claims in the bankruptcy proceedings to know:

First, the opt-out deadline of November 29, 2004 has now passed and the Settlement Facility (“SFDCT”) is reviewing the number of timely opt-out claims submitted. There is a 30 day period during which time claimants can change their mind and rescind their opt-out election. If you are in one of the settlement classes (Class 5, 6.1, 6.2, 7. 9. 10.1 or 10.2) and you did not submit a signed Participation Form by November 29, 2004, your claim is placed automatically — and permanently — in the Settlement Facility. You cannot opt-out at a later date.

Secondly, Lieff Cabraser has submitted Proof of Manufacturer (“POM”) Claim Forms for most of our Class 5 clients, i.e., potential claimants with at least one Dow Corning silicone gel breast implant. For those claimants for whom Lieff Cabraser has received Notification of Status (“NOS”) letters from the SFDCT deeming their POM acceptable, we have begun to submit your Explant, Rupture, Expedited Release, and/or Disease Claims. Please be advised that the SFDCT is a year behind in the reviewing and processing of claims, and therefore, payment of benefits is coming in very slowly.

Unfortunately, once we submit the claims, there is no way for us to know when your claim(s) will be reviewed and/or when your benefits may be paid. Be advised that even after Award Letters are sent by the SFDCT informing claimants that their claim has been approved for payment, the actual benefit check can take several weeks to reach us. Lieff Cabraser will call you immediately once we receive your benefit check.

Lieff Cabraser has filed Class 9 (Other Products) claims and is beginning to file Class 7 (Materials) Claims with the SFDCT. The SFDCT has indicated that no distributions of Disease Claims will be made from the Silicone Materials Claimants’ Fund until each timely Silicone Material Claim is reviewed and evaluated under the Settlement Option selected and the one-year deadline to cure deficiencies, if any, has expired. For those of you who have a claim in Class 9, the Settlement Facility must review and evaluate all timely Other Products claims before distributing Medical Condition Payments to Other Product Claimants. Therefore, claimants will not receive a payment from either of these two funds in this calendar year.

If you have access to the Internet and would like to check on the status of your claim(s), the SFDCT has announced the launch of the Claimant Web Interface. In order to access your claim information please contact CAP at info@sfdct.com or 1-866-874-6099 or www.dcsettlement.com to request a copy of the Web access Authorization Form. The form requires a valid signature and your email address. SFDCT will then provide you with a username and password to use when accessing your claim information. Of course, Lieff Cabraser will be keeping tabs on all of our outstanding client claims, and we will call you as soon as we get notification of status for your claim(s).

Please note that you can also log onto the same SFDCT for some basic information and responses to “Frequently Asked Questions” that are written by the SFDCT. You may also speak with a claims representative at the SFDCT at (866) 874-6099.

Because deadlines are now running and we may need you to sign paperwork relating to your claim(s), we would like to remind you to please keep us updated with your most-current contact information and to please reply to all correspondence in a timely manner.

Type of Deadline Deadline
Rupture Claim Deadline for Class 5 June 1, 2006
Silicone Material Claimant Claim Deadline for Class 7 June 1, 2006
Class 9 – Other Products Claim Deadline June 1, 2006
Breast Implant Expedited Release Claim Deadline June 1, 2007
Breast Implant Explant and Explant Assistance Claim Deadline for Class 5 June 2, 2014 (Next Business Day)
Breast Implant Disease Option Claim Deadline for Class 5 June 3, 2019 (Next Business Day)
Class 6.2, Foreign Claimants, Option 3 Claim Deadline June 3, 2019 (Next Business Day)

Please check back from time to time for further updates regarding our progress within the claims process. (Click here to contact us with individual questions or concerns.)

2005 Revised Settlement Program (RSP) Update (May 2, 2005)

For those claimants with breast implants that were eligible in the Revised Settlement Program (RSP) and may have already received some settlement benefits under the RSP, following is important information for you:

  • If you are a “Current Claimant” and have received the $5000.00 Advance Payment, you may still be eligible for an Explant benefit if (1) you haven’t already received it, and (2) if your implants were explanted after April 1, 1994, and (3) you did not replace with silicone.

You may also be eligible for Fixed or Long Term Disease benefits if you have one of the compensable diseases under the RSP. If LCHB already filed a Long Term Disease Claim for you and you have received payment(s), you may still be able to upgrade if your disease has worsened. You can contact one of our Legal Nurse Consultants to discuss your possible or existing Disease Claim. Keep in mind that the deadline for filing both Explant and Disease benefits or upgrades is December 15, 2010.

Note: Current Claimants were only eligible to receive Rupture benefits until December 16, 1996 and only as part of the Fixed Disease benefit.

  • If you are an “Other Registrant” and have received the $1000.00 Advance Payment, you may still be eligible for an Explant benefit if (1) you haven’t already received it, and (2) if your implants were explanted after April 1, 1994, and (3) you did not replace with silicone.

You may also be eligible for Long Term Disease benefits if (1) you have one of the compensable diseases under the RSP, and (2) you did not accept the $2500.00 Supplemental Offer. If LCHB already filed a Long Term Disease Claim for you and you have received payment(s), you may still be able to upgrade your Long Term Disease if your disease has worsened. You can contact one of our Legal Nurse Consultants to discuss your possible or existing Disease Claim. The deadline for both the Explant and the Disease benefits is December 15, 2010.

Note: Other Registrants are not eligible for Long Term Disease benefits. They are only eligible for Fixed Disease benefits if they qualify. Other Registrants are not eligible for any Rupture benefits.

  • If you are a “Late Registrant”, you may be eligible for possible Long Term Disease benefits only if payments to all Current and Other claimants does not exceed the Defendants’ maximum obligations.

Note: Late registrants are not eligible to receive Advance Payments, Explant benefits or Rupture benefits.



Review of 2003 Proceedings

Review of 2003 Proceedings

As of March 21, 2003, Claim Packets have been mailed to all claimants’ attorneys, or if a claimant is not represented by counsel, to the claimants themselves. At this time the Claims Facility (“SFDCT”) has begun accepting and processing claim forms. However, no payments will be made, and no deadlines are in effect until Judge Hood establishes the Effective Date for the Settlement plan.

The Effective Date, or “ED,” will be determined by Judge Hood after the resolution of the final two appeals which are currently pending in the 6th Circuit. Once the ED is determined, the following deadlines will be triggered:

  • Deadline to file Notice of Intent if not already registered with SFDCT – 90 days from ED;
  • Deadline to file Participation Forms electing to Opt In to Settlement – 6 months from ED;
  • Deadline to file Rupture, Silicone Materials and ‘Other Products’ claims – 2 years from ED;
  • Deadline to elect an Expedited Release Payment in lieu of a Disease Claim – 3 years from ED;
  • Deadline to file Explantation Claim – 10 years from ED; and
  • Deadline to file Disease Claim and/or Increased Severity Claim – 15 years from ED.



Review of 2002 Proceedings

Review of 2002 Proceedings

On December 11, 2002, the Honorable Denise Page Hood, United States District Judge, issued an Order authorizing the Settlement Facility to mail the claim forms during the week of February 18, 2003. All claim forms for women who are represented by an attorney will be sent directly to the attorney.

On October 7, 2002, the United States Supreme Court denied the request by certain Nevada objectors to hear their appeal.

On September 19, 2002, the District Court approved the Plan Proponents’ Motion to Approve Compromise of Controversy with the United States of America. This means that claimants who filed an implant claim in the bankruptcy case and received Medicare or other type of medical assistance and received a settlement from Dow Corning will not have to pay or repay any money to the U.S. government for claims arising pursuant to the Medicare Secondary Payer Statute or the Medical Care Recovery Act.

On January 29, 2002, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the objections to the Plan raised by foreign claimants and those raised by objectors who challenged the releases provided by the Plan. Overall, the Sixth Circuit upheld the structure of the Joint Plan by approving the classification of foreign claimants and ruling that the Bankruptcy Court can grant third party releases.

The Settlement Facility for the Dow Corning Trust is a legal entity, separate from Dow Corning and the Tort Claimants Committee. After the effective date, which has still not been set by the Court even though the date to mail claim forms has, the Settlement Facility will pay the claims of those eligible personal injury claimants who choose to settle. If you want to receive an update from the settlement facility callers within the United States or Canada may dial, toll-free, 866-874-6099. Outside the United States or Canada, please dial 713-874-6099. The settlement facility can also be reached via e-mail at info@sfdct.com or by accessing its website at www.dcsettlement.com.

It is important that you keep address and name changes for the Dow Corning bankruptcy case up-to-date so that you can receive all bankruptcy notices and information. To ensure that you will receive all notices, if your personal information has changed, please submit your it in writing to: The Settlement Facility Dow Corning Trust, P.O. Box 52429, Houston, Texas, 75052-2429 and to the Bankruptcy Claims Administration Facility at PO Box 7500, Midland, Michigan, 48641-7500. Do not send any claim information or medical records to the Bankruptcy Claims Administration Facility. The Bankruptcy Court Order approving the Joint Plan provides that an implant proof of claim form filed with Daticon Systems, Inc. by November 30, 1999 is considered as having been received on time.

If you have any questions regarding late claims in the case, please call the attorneys for the Tort Claimants Committee at 713-547-2271 or write to the Tort Claimants Committee at PO Box 61406, Houston, Texas, 77208-1406. You may also obtain information and e-mail your questions by accessing the Tort Claimants Committee website at www.tortcomm.org.


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* Please note that in providing and posting this information on our website, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP did not solicit votes for the approval of the Joint Plan of Reorganization.