The organizations that outfit our military members with supplies, equipment, and rations have a significant responsibility to ensure the products they ship overseas are safe and work according to their intended purpose. These products directly contribute to many aspects of the military, making any defective product especially problematic once it’s used in rotation. In some cases, manufacturers will ship defective products despite the emphasis on safety, which can have serious consequences for the brave individuals who fight to protect our way of life.
3M Dual-Ended Combat Arms Earplugs (Version2—CAEv2) that our military gave to soldiers from 2003 to 2015 were found to contain defects that caused lifelong hearing loss for service members who used them. Many who experienced hearing loss are now part of multidistrict litigation (MDL) to hold 3M accountable. MDL plaintiffs allege 3M was aware of CAEv2’s defects but deliberately chose to prioritize its profits over safety.
Recently, a jury awarded one bellwether plaintiff $13 million in the seventh bellwether trial of the CAEv2 earplugs MDL. And the jury’s decision is a step forward for the 3M litigation as a whole. As the MDL progresses, there will be more pressure on 3M. Those impacted by the defective product are one step closer to bringing 3M to justice.
Why Is the Verdict Important for the 3M Earplug Lawsuit?
MDL’s involve hundreds — potentially thousands — of plaintiffs who were impacted by a common product or service. Bellwether trials are important because they can help parties get a sense of what to expect for future trials, and outcomes may increase pressure on parties to enter into settlement discussions. The $13 million verdict was the largest for a plaintiff in this MDL yet.
What’s the Next Step?
There are several remaining bellwether trials. Although the most recent verdict in the 3M lawsuit is a strong step in the right direction, there’s still a lot of work to be done for the plaintiffs. We’ll do whatever it takes to bring justice to the individuals affected.
Contact us today for more information.