Williams & Connolly lawyers are renowned for their experience defending personal injury litigation stemming from pharmaceutical products, surgical devices, and alleged medical malpractice, as well as oil and gas well explosions, plane and train accidents, farm equipment, industrial products, and consumer appliances. As Chambers observed, “A strong trial capacity and a fearsome track record means this firm of hard-headed litigators is now in high demand in the products area.”
Williams & Connolly is frequently asked to serve as lead trial counsel and national coordinating counsel in the defense of national pharmaceutical products liability litigation. The firm’s record of success in this area reflects its lawyers’ commitment to the fundamentals of litigation at every stage—immersing themselves in the facts, developing strategy at national and state levels, and trying precedent-setting cases.
As lead trial counsel, the firm’s lawyers are often asked to try cases at the earliest, and most uncertain, stages of the litigation. Williams & Connolly lawyers have served as lead counsel in numerous cases, defeating class certification, succeeding on summary judgment, and winning jury verdicts at trial. For example, the firm served as lead counsel for Wyeth in the first bellwether case that was tried in the hormone therapy federal multi-district litigation, which resulted in a defense verdict.
As national coordinating counsel, Williams & Connolly guides the defense through all phases of litigation, from document production and witness preparation to trial and end-game scenarios. The firm has built relationships with other defense firms over the years that enable our lawyers to work cooperatively as part of a national team when the needs of the case are best-served by a virtual firm. For example, Merck selected Williams & Connolly as co-national coordinating counsel in the Vioxx litigation, one of the largest products liability litigations in the country. After 15 trials involving Williams & Connolly and other defense firms, most resulting in favorable verdicts for Merck, Williams & Connolly took the lead in negotiating a settlement for the overall litigation.
Other leading roles in products/torts litigation include: national counsel in the Raptiva litigation for Genentech, co-national counsel in the Chantix litigation for Pfizer, national counsel for Amtrak and CSX railroads in the Sunset Limited train crash litigation, and national counsel for Wyeth in the Norplant, Thimerosal and Hormone Therapy litigations.