We generally expect to feel safe in our everyday lives when we use products, enjoy our homes and neighborhoods, or go to work. However, even the people, places, and items we trust most can cause us serious harm. Negligent companies and other entities could be held responsible for a victim’s suffering when they do.
Whether you were hurt by a dangerous product or a catastrophe caused by a corporation’s negligence, you could have legal options. Our Los Angeles mass tort attorneys from KJT Law Group can help you navigate a lawsuit and go after a recovery for your damages.
KJT Law Group is a Los Angeles-based personal injury law firm with experience representing plaintiffs in many areas of law, including personal injury, workers’ compensation, employment law, wrongful death cases, and landlord/tenant disputes. We make it our mission to stand up for everyday people harmed by major corporate entities.
Our attorneys don’t shy away from a legal battle. We’re prepared to take on even the most challenging cases—including mass tort litigation. In these massive cases, multinational corporations are often involved, and billions of dollars in damages can be on the line. However, we know how to fight for our clients’ results.
Our Los Angeles mass tort attorneys can help you navigate the complexities of a mass tort. We will stand up for you, building a strong case based on evidence and negotiating for your best interests.
What Is a Mass Tort Lawsuit?
Many similar lawsuits against one defendant are consolidated into one major legal action in a mass tort. Typically, victims (also called plaintiffs) in the tort were injured by a similar product, medication, environmental condition, or another source of injury.
There are many different types of mass torts, including:
- Dangerous product cases
- Defective drug cases
- Man-made catastrophes or other accidents
- Environmental/toxic exposure cases
The tort might involve plaintiffs from a distinct geographic area, such as in the Dixie wildfire case against Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E). On the other hand, many mass torts draw plaintiffs from across the country, such as in dangerous drug or defective product cases.
You may be familiar with several mass torts that have made the news, such as the talcum powder lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson or the defective sleep apnea machines case against Philips. There are many more tort cases currently at trial or pending litigation.
Mass Tort vs. Class Action: What’s the Difference?
Mass torts are distinct from class action cases. However, they do share similarities. Both mass tort and class action cases involve a large number of plaintiffs who were similarly injured as a result of a single defendant’s actions (or inactions).
- In a class action, a single lawsuit is brought on behalf of all plaintiffs in the case. Then, any settlement or awards that result are generally split evenly among the plaintiffs.
- In a mass tort, plaintiffs keep their own individual lawsuits against the defendant. In general, the plaintiffs can then seek compensation based on the unique merits of their own cases—and receive compensation according to their unique damages.
Mass torts also come with unique processes and procedures, such as bellwether trials. Bellwether trials are viewed as test trials that are often used to gauge the strength of the plaintiffs’ cases. In bellwether trials, key plaintiffs in the mass tort will present their arguments, evidence, and claims for damages.
If these bellwether trials go well for the plaintiffs, this is generally a good sign that others in the mass tort could have a strong compensation case.
Types of Damages Recoverable in a Mass Tort Lawsuit
Serious injuries can result in serious losses, and a lawsuit can help victims make a recovery. Mass tort lawsuits can result in several forms of damages for injury victims, including:
These damages represent the financial costs stemming from the injury, such as:
- Medical bills: Even more moderate injuries can result in major medical costs. You could seek compensation for ambulance services, emergency room care, hospitalization, diagnostic testing, visits to a doctor, physical therapy and rehabilitation, and more. The cost of your past, present, and future expected care needs could be part of your compensation.
- Lost earnings: You could get reimbursed for paychecks you missed during your recovery. If your injuries prevent you from returning to your former working capacity, you could also seek damages for the difference between your expected future earnings and your previous income.
- Out-of-pocket costs: Injury-related expenses can add up. You could seek compensation for these out-of-pocket costs.
Your injury may cause you many hardships with no dollar amount attached to them. These losses could be recoverable:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Loss of companionship (in wrongful death cases)
Many other types of losses are compensable. A mass tort attorney from our team can advise you on what you could seek.
How To Determine Liability and Damages in a Mass Tort Case
Our attorneys know how to determine liability and your damages when you file a mass tort lawsuit.
Liability refers to the person or entity who is financially responsible for paying you in a lawsuit. The liable party could be different from the at-fault party (the person or entity who directly caused your injury).
For instance, let’s say a truck driver carrying dangerous chemicals crashed in your neighborhood, releasing toxic contaminants into the local water supply and injuring your family. While the truck driver may have caused the accident, the trucking company might be responsible for paying you damages.
Our team knows how to identify the liable party and gather evidence to show who was responsible for your suffering. We can use many sources to do so, such as:
- Company records and internal communications
- Surveillance camera footage
- Your medical records
- Expert witness testimony
- And more
Our mass tort attorneys want to seek the highest possible compensation available to you. This means we will build strong evidence of your damages and how you were harmed by your injuries.
We will ask you to tell us more about how the injury has affected your life overall. Then, we’ll gather documents that can tell the story of your financial damages, such as medical bills and past paychecks. Then, we will make a persuasive argument to illustrate just how seriously your injury harmed you.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Mass Tort Lawsuit?
The statute of limitations refers to the deadline to file a lawsuit. However, several statutes of limitations may apply to your case.
The general deadline to file a lawsuit in a California injury case is two years, per CCP § 335.1. However, your deadline to file could be longer or shorter, depending on your case’s facts. Again, an attorney from our team can explain which of these deadlines may apply to your case.
How a Mass Tort Lawyer Can Help You Pursue Justice and Damages
Our attorneys can handle every aspect of your mass tort case, including:
- Explaining your legal options
- Gathering evidence of your losses and liability
- Filing a lawsuit on your behalf
- Navigating your case through the mass tort process
- Negotiating a fair settlement or award
- Protecting your rights to seek compensation
There are many other day-to-day tasks we will complete for your case. Above all, we’ll support you through a challenging time and help you make the financial recovery you need.
The Benefits of Joining a Mass Tort Lawsuit
Joining a mass tort may sound confusing initially. These cases can take time to resolve, as well. However, with our team by your side, you will have an advocate through it all. You may see the following benefits of joining a mass tort:
- Get strength in numbers as you pursue justice from the defendant.
- Seek a financial recovery for your losses.
- Bring your own lawsuit against the defendant and pursue damages unique to your case.
- Stand up against a corporate entity and hold them accountable for your or your loved one’s suffering.
Contact a Los Angeles Mass Tort Attorney’s Team Today
Our mass tort attorneys in Los Angeles are ready to work for you. Learn more today by contacting KJT Law Group at (818) 507-8525. We offer free case reviews, so you can learn your legal options and next steps now. Our team can help you understand personal injury law in California.