More than 50 product liability suits involving Skechers toning shoes have been consolidated in a Kentucky federal court. The suits all claim that his shoes cause leg, ankle and foot injuries. The U.S. Judicial Panel for Multidistrict Litigation reported Jan. 14 that there were 54 separate product liability actions in the Skechers toning shoe MDL. This litigation is currently before U.S. District Judge Thomas B. Russell in the Western District of Kentucky. More than 100 Plaintiffs have been added to the litigation since the middle of January.

The Manhattan Beach, Calif. shoe company manufactures toning shoes, including Skechers Shape-ups and Tone-ups. The shoes have a pronounced rocker bottom sole. The lawsuits against Skechers generally allege that the shoes are defective because the rocker bottom soles alter a person’s gait and causes severe lateral instability. In addition to alleging physical injury, Plaintiffs typically allege that Skechers violates consumer protection laws by falsely claiming its toning shoes confer multiple health benefits.

The complaints contend that “Skechers places consumers at increased risk for chronic injuries such as stress fractures and tendon ruptures, as well as acute injuries from falling.” The federal MDL panel centralized the Skechers product liability cases in a December 19, 2011 order that transferred the 12 lawsuits pending in federal court at that time to the Western District of Kentucky. Last year, Skechers agreed to pay $40 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that the company made unsupported claims about the health benefits of its toning shoes.

Source: Lawyers USA Online

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