STORY FROM: Drugs & Medical Devices

Lack of Expert Testimony Defeats Zoloft Action, W. Va. Appellate Court Affirms

CHARLESTON, W. Va. — A West Virginia appellate court has upheld an award of summary judgment to Pfizer in a Zoloft birth defect mass tort action, ruling that the plaintiffs’ failure to present expert testimony in support of their failure-to-warn claims doomed their case.

In a May 15 opinion, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals reasoned that in cases of a complex nature, expert testimony is needed to sustain the plaintiffs’ evidentiary burden because the issues “are beyond the common knowledge and experience of the average juror.”

Plaintiffs are two women who took Zoloft while pregnant and their minor ...

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