Montgomery, A1a.-based plaintiffs firm Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C. announced Friday morning that Merck & Co. Inc. has agreed to pay $4.85 billion to resolve Vioxx-related claims in which a claimant has suffered a heart attack, sudden cardiac death, or stroke.

The litigation involved product liability claims related to the pain reliever, Vioxx, has been ongoing for over five years. It is estimated that thousands of personal injury lawsuits have been filed.

Discovery has been ongoing in consolidated cases throughout the country since 2001.

Moreover, over 19 trials have taken place between August 2005 and September 2007 with mixed results, including defense verdicts, plaintiffs verdicts, hung juries, and retrials.

More than 11 months ago in December 2006, Judge Eldon E. Fallon of the Federal Court in New Orleans in consultation with coordinating Judges Victoria Chaney of the Los Angeles Superior Court, Judge Carol Higbee of the New Jersey Superior Court and Judge Randy Wilson of the Harris County, Texas District Court directed Merck and Plaintiffs to begin continuous and frequent confidential negotiations.



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