The Mass Torts, Insurance and Consumer Litigation Group at Skadden has been involved in many of the significant complex tort and consumer fraud litigations of the last 30 years, many of which are considered “bet-the-company” matters. The group pioneered the “national counsel” model of handling mass tort litigation and has strong relationships with local defense lawyers in virtually every state. We handle some of the most noteworthy cases nationwide for clients such as Altria, Anheuser-Busch, Bausch & Lomb, Electrolux, Intuitive Surgical, Johnson & Johnson, Lincoln Electric, Merck, Nissan, Pfizer, Red Bull and Toyota.
Our practice is comprised of experienced litigators who have defended cases on every level — from formulating and implementing national strategy in multijurisdictional litigation to conducting Daubert hearings and trials, as well as pursuing significant appeals. We have been lead defense counsel in a number of MDL proceedings, developed experts and conducted expert discovery, mapped strategies to obtain important early victories on substantive motions in key jurisdictions, coordinated discovery in thousands of actions, and prepared for and conducted precedent-setting trials. Skadden also has served as appellate counsel in landmark cases in many state and federal appellate courts and files amicus briefs in appeals that raise significant substantive law issues.
Additionally, we have been involved in numerous developments in class action law. For example, several attorneys in our group were instrumental in the passage of the Class Action Fairness Act, which expanded federal jurisdiction over class actions and prevents plaintiffs from “forum shopping” by filing their claims in state courts known to be plaintiff-friendly. We also regularly represent the Product Liability Advisory Council and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as amici in appeals involving important class action principles.
Our attorneys have been among the lead proponents of expanding the use and application of the “no injury” doctrine, which holds that a plaintiff fails to state a legally cognizable injury when he or she is merely seeking recovery for the alleged heightened risk of physical or economic injury. Also, we have developed and implemented the “class-wide proof” concept in scores of class actions, persuading federal and state court judges to deny certification because the plaintiffs could not properly try their claims on a class-wide basis. We have experience combating efforts to water down the “injury” and “causation” elements of many causes of action through the use of “presumed reliance” and “market fraud” arguments.
In 2017, Skadden was named a finalist in The American Lawyer’s 2017 Litigation Department of the Year competition, and, for the seventh consecutive time, was named to the BTI Consulting Group’s list of top litigation law firms: “The BTI Fearsome Five.” BTI Litigation Outlook 2018 also noted Skadden as a Powerhouse in Product Liability Litigation and Class Actions. Skadden was named Washington, D.C.’s Litigation Department of the Year for Products Liability by The National Law Journal in 2015. We ranked among the top firms for Products Liability & Mass Torts by Chambers USA 2017 and in the top tier for Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions – Defendants by U.S. News — Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” 2017.