Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge David A. Katz issued an order calling for applications from attorneys interested in serving in leadership roles for the DePuy Orthopaedics hip recall case. On December 7, 2010, Jeff Berniard, the sole principal of Berniard Law Firm in New Orleans, Louisiana, answered Judge Katz’s call by submitting a letter seeking a spot on the integral Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee for the DePuy case. A Plaintiff’s Steering Committee is responsible for making strategic decisions that affect the execution and administration of large scale class action lawsuits. Mr. Berniard will find out if he has been selected for this leadership post sometime soon.
Despite establishing his own law firm only five years ago, Berniard has quickly emerged as a foreperson in complex litigation. The Louisiana attorney, who already has extensive experience representing claimants in complex product liability litigation, has been recognized as an expert in the DePuy Hip Recall lawsuits. He has taught continuing legal education courses on the DePuy Hip Recall lawsuits for Thomson Reuters and he plans on continuing in his role as a lecturer on the topic for as long as the DePuy legal situation continues to unfold. Additionally, Berniard maintains this blog, a website devoted to regularly informing the general public of various issues surrounding the DePuy Hip Recall litigation.
In support of his application to the Plaintiff’s Steering Committee, Berniard pointed to his professional history as class counsel for lawsuits involving toxic torts, Sherman Antitrust, and first party insurance litigation in his letter to Judge Katz. Consistent with Berniard’s varied experience, at least one court overseeing some of his cases praised the Louisiana attorney saying, “This Court finds that Class Counsel are highly skilled attorneys with experience in class action litigation. The substantial settlement amount negotiated by Class Counsel further evidences their competence.” The court further noted that Berniard and his colleagues had devoted “an exorbinant [sic] amount of time [to the lawsuit while] assuming substantial risk that they might not be compensated for their efforts” during the case in question. Combined with his varied experiences in class action lawsuits similar to DePuy, these complimentary observations of Berniard’s past professional successes by the judiciary buttress his assertion that he is a suitable candidate for the DePuy Hip Litigation Plaintiff’s Steering Committee.
Whether or not Berniard is appointed to the Plaintiff’s Steering Committee by Judge Katz, Berniard says he will remain tirelessly committed to guiding victims of DePuy’s defective hip implants to the verdicts and settlements they are entitled to. In fact, Berniard continues to accept new clients who have experienced damage from DePuy’s faulty medical products, and he has filed many suits against the manufacturer already. And like the past cases he has previously been complimented for, Berniard intends on representing his clients with the same selflessness and tireless vigor he has been credited with doing before.
Continue to check this blog periodically for updates on attorney Jeff Berniard’s efforts in representing plaintiffs in their ongoing class action against DePuy Orthopaedics.