2021 will be remembered as a historic year, largely due to the continued destruction wrought by the Coronavirus Pandemic. However, there were other significant stories, specifically in the realm of civil justice. Those stories comprise our top-10 list for 2021.
Legal Inspector’s yearly collection of the 10 most important civil cases of 2021, was produced by Virginia Beach, VA attorney-author Richard N. (Rick) Shapiro and his research assistants. This year-end compilation has become a custom and has actually been offered by Rick and his group for Legal Examiner every year considering that 2012.
No. 10– New Low for Former President Trump’s “Cracken” Legal Group of Sidney Powell, Rudy Giuliani, and Others
Why It Made the List: The civil litigation brought by Rule Ballot Systems versus members of the so-called “Cracken” legal group– including Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell– highlights the reality that lawyers can not spout non-sense and make absurd, unwarranted claims of scams on television and definitely not in a court of law.
No. 9 -Dominion Voting Systems May Own a Pillow Business Quickly
Why It Made the List: This story is notable since it highlights the fact that non-attorneys also have a duty not to make incorrect, outlandish claims versus another specific or organization with no proof whatsoever. This appears to be a “Libel 101” lawsuit submitted by Rule Ballot Systems versus Mike Lindell (largely referred to as the “My Pillow Man”) stemming from his unwarranted allegations that voting makers produced by Rule were somehow manipulated to alter the outcome of the 2020 election, consisting of possible “hacking” or espionage by the Chinese government, the Russian government, and the Keebler fairies that make those scrumptious chocolate cookies. That 3rd one is totally comprised, similar to Lindell’s allegations against Rule.
No. 8– DC Federal Government Goes After White Supremacist Groups in Civil Lawsuit Seeking Millions in Damages for January 6 Insurrection
Why It Made the List: This is an essential story since it supplies a pointer that the criminal justice system is not the only opportunity we need to hold people and companies liable for wrongdoings. When the Attorney general of the United States for the District of Columbia submitted a civil suit versus dozens of members of the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, and other groups, it sent a clear message that members of these white supremacist companies will be delegated the injury and harm they inflicted on January 6 against our country, and democracy itself.
No. 7–$475 Million Settlement in the Works to Compensate Victims of the Longest Running Oil Spill in U.S. History
Why It Made the List: The proposed settlement of almost half a billion dollars has been referred to as an essential “down payment” made by a New Orleans-based oil business to help address the serious effects stemming from the longest-running oil spill in American history. The proposed settlement includes a $432 million cleanup trust fund, in addition to an additional $43 million that would be utilized to settlement a federal lawsuit over tidying up deserted wells dripping considering that 2004.
No. 6– Capitol Police Officers File Civil Liberty Suit In Effort to Hold Former President Trump Accountable for January 6 Insurrection
Why It Made the List: This story highlights the early stages of a civil rights suit that might become one of the most crucial stories of 2022, if Capitol Authorities Officers are in fact able to hold previous President Trump, in his individual capacity, responsible for the awful events that took place at the Capitol on January 6.
No. 5– Kid Scouts of America proposes $800 million settlement to compensate sex abuse victims
Why It Made the List: Overlooking reports of abuse in the hopes that they just disappear is never ever appropriate and any organization that is indifferent to the sexual assault of minors should be held liable.
The Young Boy Scouts of America revealed a tentative settlement contract to pay $800 million toward a payment fund set up for survivors of sex abuse caused by scout leaders when they were children. This enormous settlement arrangements begins the heels of the Boy Scouts of America company filing for bankruptcy due to countless civil claims submitted against it by previous members who alleged various occurrences of abuse that took place over the course of years. It is heartening to see the civil justice system help hold an organization liable, particularly when that organization appears to have actually ignored duplicated reports of troubling abuse and sexual assaults dedicated by scout leaders versus young boys.
No. 4– Coronavirus Pandemic Ushers in Technological Development to Civil Lawsuits
Why It Made the List: In 2021, state and federal courts throughout the nation performed countless hearings, depositions, settlement conferences, and even trials practically completely over Zoom and other digital meeting platforms. The shift to “totally digital lawsuits” is a byproduct of the COVID-19 pandemic and the acknowledged risk of having groups of people being in a restricted location for hours on end breathing in recycled air. The welcome of Zoom and other platforms has likewise supplied effectiveness gains for some judges. This is likely why, in July 2021, the Conference of Chief Justices and the Conference of State Court Administrators jointly backed a set of “Guiding Concepts for Post-pandemic Court Innovation.” The recently released set of assisting principles suggested judges move “as lots of court processes as possible online,” and keep them there for the foreseeable future. This could very well indicate Zoom-based lawsuits procedures end up being the norm with in-person conferences, hearings, depoisitions, etc going the method of Hit.
Sources: https://iaals.du.edu/blog/back-future-civil-case-management && https://judicature.duke.edu/articles/the-zooming-of-federal-civil-litigation/
No. 3– $626 Million Settlement To Be Paid to Flint Water Crisis Victims
Why It Made the List: This seems the largest settlement in Michigan history with the funds being directed towards compensating more than 85,000 Flint citizens adversely affected by the water crisis. In fact, nearly 80 percent of the settlement is anticipated to be paid to children who were more youthful than 18 when they were first exposed to Flint River water, which contained elevated levels of lead and germs in 2014 and 2015.
No. 2– Downfall of Purdue Pharma and the Sackler Dynasty
Why It Made the List: The pharmaceutical business mainly accountable for sustaining the national opioid pandemic is lastly being held liable for the untold damage caused by its items. To be clear, Purdue Pharma is formally no more. In addition, the Sackler family (i.e. the household that founded Purdue) has accepted pay $4.5 billion in damages to settle 10s of thousands of opioid claims against the company. In a recent development, the settlement contract was turned down since the resistance afforded to members of the Sackler family was too generous. This might very well suggest the Sackler family might possibly be held liable for fueling the opioid epidemic.
Sources: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/01/health/purdue-sacklers-opioids-settlement.html & https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/why-a-judge-rejected-a-settlement-with-the-sackler-family-for-their-role-in-opioid-crisis
The Top Civil Justice Story of 2021
The Numeration of Johnson & & Johnson Why It
‘s on the List: The reckoning of Johnson & & Johnson, a business leviathan that stopped working to inform consumers about the potential health risks of its talc-based items, is perhaps one of the greatest civil justice stories in modern history. The 135-year-old company was beleaguered by countless civil suits filed on behalf of women who were diagnosed with ovarian cancer that was connected to using J&J’s talcum powder and associated items. After a series of enormous jury decisions that directed J&J to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in damages to customers, the business decided to break apart into two business entities, a customer products business and a medical business. If that was not surprising enough, the business proceeded to utilize among its brand-new corporate entities to handle a majority of the liabilities from the talcum baby powder litigation and immediately declare insolvency protection. This choice instantly drew the ire of members of Congress and the legal community. The reaction was so harsh that it may have impacted the choice by a federal bankruptcy judge to issue only a short-term, 60-day moratorium on the talc powder suits filed versus J&J. Many people, including members of the J&J legal defense group, were anticipating a lot longer remain order to be provided to postpone any large payments to victims. The short 60-day remain on lawsuits is another indicator that the J&J’s day of numeration has gotten here.
Sources:https://www.npr.org/2021/11/10/1054432222/johnson-n-johnson-baby-powder-cancer-lawsuits && https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/12/business/johnson-johnson-split.html