Mass Torts and How They Affect You

The term “mass torts” simply means that there was an act of negligence on the part of an individual or company that resulted in many people being injured or causing death. Examples would include companies that neglect the fact that their workers are being exposed to asbestos, pharmaceuticals that are improperly tested and even more recently, peanut butter that is found to have salmonella. In all of these examples the person or company that produced these products or fostered an environment for exposure can be held responsible for the resulting injuries. Following are four very frequently asked questions about mass torts to help you better understand the process and what kind of action is needed when you believe you may be affected by one.

Why are mass torts different?

A mass tort claim will involve many parties and court jurisdictions. The massive amount of money the accused company or entity throws out to defend these actions requires the ability of several firms to represent the interests of the injured parties. The process is a very lengthy one and requires patience and an understanding that this size of lawsuit will not resolve easily.

What is the result of a mass tort?

Our system of justice allows claims such as these to be the watchdog for the American public. We should hold defendants who provide services or products to a higher standard. When that standard is breached, they should be accountable. By bringing the negligence before the courts, many people who may have been injured will be protected because a product will be recalled, information will be made widely available so people can be aware of the dangers and it can save lives.

What do I do if I believe I have been injured with other people as a result of negligence causing a mass tort claim?

Immediately contact a lawyer who is involved in mass tort claims. The ability of this lawyer to network with lawyers across the country involved in this claim is crucial. Hardison & Cochran are part of a network of lawyers through the Association of Trial Lawyers of America. This association works to stay informed of the latest claims and meet throughout the year to make sure we are providing the best possible representation for all of our clients.

What if I don’t know if there is a claim?

Every mass tort claim started with one person who suspected something wrong. Don’t be afraid to ask. Contact a lawyer if you suspect that a product is defective or a drug is not doing what it claims to do and you notice a pattern. Being the protector of the general public can start with you.

Recent mass torts:


Fosamax is a prescription drug used for bone loss which may cause necrosis (the death of living cells or tissues) in the jaw and other bones.

Contact physician if any of the following warning signals develop:

  • Swelling
  • Infection to the gums
  • Loosening of teeth
  • Poor healing of gums
  • Numbness or feeling of heaviness in jaw
  • Exposed bone

Ortho Evra

Ortho Evra is a contraception patch that exposes women to 60% more estrogen than normal birth control pills. This spike puts women at a higher risk for blood clots than previously discovered. The FDA has since approved labeling that warns healthcare providers and patients of the increased risk.

Contact physician if any of the following warning signals develop:

  • Sharp chest pain, coughing of blood, or sudden shortness of breath (indicating a possible clot in the lung).
  • Pain in the calf (indicating a possible clot in the leg).
  • Crushing chest pain or tightness in the chest (indicating a possible heart attack).
  • Sudden severe headache, vomiting, dizziness, fainting, disturbances of vision or speech, weakness, or numbness in an arm or leg (indicating a possible stroke).
  • Sudden partial or complete loss of vision (indicating a possible clot in the eye).
  • Breast lumps (indicating possible breast cancer or fibrocystic disease of the breast; ask your doctor or health care professional to show you how to examine your breasts).
  • Severe pain or tenderness in the stomach area (indicating a possibly ruptured liver tumor).
  • Severe problems with sleeping, weakness, lack of energy, fatigue, or change in mood (possibly indicating severe depression).
  • Jaundice or a yellowing of the skin or eyeballs accompanied frequently by fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, dark colored urine, or light colored bowel movements (indicating possible liver problems).
About the Author

Hardison & Cochran was established based on the conviction that a modern approach was essential in today’s legal landscape. Focused on delivering exceptional results through a skilled team, the firm prioritizes personal attention, integrity, and client needs. Each attorney, paralegal, and staff member is dedicated to this vision. Over three decades, with Ben Cochran overseeing daily operations, the firm has evolved into a highly respected practice.