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Fate of liability pre-emption hangs in balance

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

Comments by US Supreme Court judges in their review of the legal arguments in the Medtronic vs Lohr case do not bode well for medical device manufacturers. Industry had hoped that the highest tribunal would uphold their contention that FDA approval offers some protection against state product liability suits. But on April 23rd, eight of the nine Justices strongly challenged Medtronic attorneys, and expressed considerable scepticism over the company's argument that the federal Medical Device Amendments of 1976 pre-empt state lawsuits.

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