Bayer has been sued over the Essure device in several venues – a federal court in Pennsylvania, a state court in Pennsylvania, a state court in California (where KBA partner Justin Browne is a member of the Essure PSC), and a state court in Missouri. The Honorable John R. Padova remanded cases that had been sent to his federal court back to state court in Philadelphia. Also, lawsuits filed in state court can go to federal courts under certain circumstances. The federal court has to have jurisdiction over the cases, meaning, the power to rule over the case, which comes from statutes. For example, one statute allows federal courts to hear cases between parties of different states of the dispute concerns more than $75,000. Another law gives federal courts jurisdiction of the case involves questions of federal law.
The Judge, in this case, found there was no federal jurisdiction. He relied upon a U.S. Supreme Court case that has to do with preemption to support his ruling. Since the law allows people to sue medical device companies under state law for alleged failures to follow post-market regulations, it wouldn’t make sense for all cases to appear in federal court. This development is a loss for Bayer who fought against this ruling. As a result, 16 consolidated suits brought by women alleging invites caused they by Bayer’s birth control device Essure.