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New Facebook Data Breach Class Action Lawsuit Affects 50M Accounts

Facebook users In California filed a second data breach class action lawsuit this week after the social media giant admitted cyber thieves hacked into millions of accounts.

Federal MDL Judge Considers Forcing Mandatory Class Action Proceedings to Force Settlement of Opioid Epidemic Lawsuits

Trial lawyers representing plaintiffs in thousands of opioid epidemic lawsuits may see their clients forced into one class action proceeding after a federal judge declares consolidation may be the only feasible route to reach a fair settlement for everyone.

Ohioan Claims Defective DePuy ASR Medical Device Poisoned Him

An Ohio resident who underwent hip replacement surgery says his DePuy medical device gave him metal poisoning in 2018, and now he wants the manufacturer to pay damages.

Lawsuit Claims Defective Bard ePTFE Mesh Failed in Ventral Hernia Surgery

Ventral hernia mesh lawsuits are trending again this month after a Missouri citizen filed a products liability complaint against Davol and Bard, claiming the company’s ePTFE Bard Mesh defective design induced harmful bodily injuries.

Burgerville Credit Card Data Breach Ignites Class Action Lawsuit

Northwestern fast-food group, Burgerville, found a complex cybersecurity hack in their data servers this month that may have exposed the confidential credit card information of millions of customers who frequented the restaurant from 2107 to 2018.

Government Investigates Deceptive Bank and Credit Union Overdraft Fee Abuses

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) investigated deceitful overdraft fee practices from banks and credit unions across America this week to determine if new banking policies force vulnerable account holders to pay excessive fees.

 

FaceBook Data Breach

In late September, Facebook engineers discovered a security issue with the UI’s “View As” feature, and upon further investigation, the company discovered over 50 million accounts were at risk of exposure.

According to executives the company quick-fixed the problem by temporarily disabling “View As” and requiring 90 million people log back into Facebook and change their passwords.

Facebook has also pledged to notify all users caught in the “View As” data breach and explain to them how the security risk affects them.

Lead Plaintiffs Echavarria and Walter filed their Facebook “View As” class action in a Northern California federal court and are seeking certification on behalf of consumers whose private-confidential information may be in the hands of thieves.

Echavarria and Walter further call for the courts to force Facebook to secure its automatic sign-on protocol that allows users to log into the website without typing a password.

The plaintiffs likewise demand the company repairs the “View As” feature, which places private data at risk when users run it to learn what their profile looks like from a public eye.

This new civil filling follows an earlier mass tort/class action lawsuit that alleges Facebook negligently sold private and confidential user data to Cambridge Analytica, which Russian cyber thieves hacked during the US 2016 presidential election.

Facebook promised the European Union it would fix its lax security issues after paying European regulators over $660,000 in fines in July 2018.

The class members in this suit claim, by evidence of the most recent data breach, the company never kept its promise to beef up security. Facebook engineers still do not know who was behind attack, and executives have admitted the hack was “complex,” according to the lawsuit.

Lead attorney, John Yanchunis of Morgan & Morgan PA went on record saying Facebook’s negligence “yet again, failed to protect consumers’ information from hackers.”

This data breach further brings into question Facebook’s data security during the October 2018 midterm elections and whether the cyber intrusion will again invite “elector obstruction” from outside hackers, according to Yanchunis.

Facebook “View As” Data Breach Class Action Lawsuit [Echavarria v. Facebook Inc., N.D. Cal, 20185:18-cv-05982]

Overdraft Fee Investigation

Recent CFPB complaints allege financial institutions in many states hit consumers with unfair, multiple overdraft fees by applying new bank rules that authorized electronic debit services to overdraw checking and savings accounts with insufficient funds to cover the charge.

A pew report moreover showed US financial institutions have been steadily generating bigger profits by raising overdraft fees on ATM withdrawals, debit card balances, and checks.

Multiple overdraft fees can compound faster than consumers realize, according to the CFPB, and a financial institution’s overdraft policy may encourage some account holders to overdraw their accounts unintentionally, which leads to substantial financial burdens afterwards.

Banks Create New Overdraft Fee Rules

Over the last three years, fewer consumers overdrew their accounts, which prompted many banks and credit unions to modify their overdraft policies and double overdraft fees to make up for the loss in revenue.

Late last year, large financial intuitions Capital One and HSBC were processing same-day banking transactions out of sequence, the following day, to maximize on overdraft fees when money ran out of checking accounts, according to federal regulators.

The CFPB has threatened to release new overdraft fee protection rules and has warned banks and credit unions that class action lawsuits may follow if the agency finds financial institutions deliberately abused consumers through deceptive overdraft fee practices.

What is an Overdraft Fee?

An overdraft is money lent to customers by banks and credit unions to pay for a purchase when the account holder holds insufficient funds to cover the charge. The financial institution afterwards imposes overdraft fees for the service of lending money

In the 80s, banks set up overdraft protection with intent to help consumers avoid embarrassing situations where electronic debit or credit card services would decline a transaction.

Back then, financial institutions reasonably charged overdraft fees at $2-$5 per occurrence, and consumers could only overdraw their account one or two times a month.

Nowadays, most overdraft protection policies allow banks to impose multiple overdraft fees varying from $35 to $60 for each transaction. Many consumers view these polices abusive as multiple overdraft fees can add up to hundreds of dollars a month for unsuspecting financially weak account holders.

Overdraft Fee Class Action Lawsuits

The law forbids financial institutions from participating in deceptive overdraft fee practices.

Federal regulators stepped in almost ten years ago when bank fee abuse practices got out of hand. New rules from 2010 require customers to opt into overdraft protection programs; this stops banks from secretly pushing the service into new accounts when they open.

Several banks have ignored the new rules or have created policies to get around them.

These financial intuitions justifiably faced overdraft fee class action lawsuits and settled them out of court for millions of dollars after years of costly litigation.  

The CFPB believes many banks may still be engaging in unfair overdraft assessment practices.

The consumer protection lawyers at Claims Match will continue to follow this CFPB investigation and will respond appropriately if the agency finds financial intuitions implemented improper policies that regularly allowed unreasonable and excessive charges to checking accounts with insufficient funds.

DePuy ASR Medical Device Class Action

Douglas F. joined other plaintiffs in DePuy MDL this week after filing an ASR products liability complaint in federal court.

The plaintiff alleges his 2006 DePuy hip implant required revision surgery in 2017 because the system contained defective, poisonous parts.

Douglas further claims to have blood work evidence confirming poisonous cobalt and chromium were in his body when doctors treated him that same year for an infection caused by the flawed hip replacement system.

When physicians finally established the toxic metals in Douglas’ blood were stemming from his defective medical device, they preformed emergency surgery to remove the ASR system and replaced it with antibiotic bone cement that remained in the surgical area for six months, according to the lawsuit.

Douglas is seeking special damages to cover loss of income and expenses for two removal and replacement surgeries and general damages to remedy pain and suffering and loss of limb during the class period.

Metal Poisoning Prompts DePuy ASR Hip Replacement Lawsuits

Conglomerate Johnson & Johnson, the parent company of DePuy Medical Devices, has paid billion of dollars to settle thousands of DePuy ASR hip replacement lawsuits.

Like Douglas, the plaintiffs who sued the company claimed the alloy components in their DePuy hip replacement system detached over time and produced metal poisoning after toxic metals fragments entered into their bloodstreams.

Well documented FDA investigations comparatively reveal ASR cobalt slivers can pry into adjacent tissue, causing painful inflammation and infection as the body struggles to expel the particles. Chromium molecules from faulty DePuy ASR hip systems can also enter the bloodstream and provoke an incurable metal poisoning, which patients carry with them for the rest of their lives.

Over 98% of DePuy ASR victims will need revision surgery to remove and replace their defective medical devices, and even if they did not contract metal poising at the time of their corrective surgery, the disease may still appear years after, according to DePuy ASR hip replacement MDL evidence.

Damages from Defective DePuy ASR Medical Devices

Metal poisoning is a painful, life changing illness that has no cure.

Trial lawyers have brought to light an internal 2011 DePuy memo that proved the device manufacturer learned that two out of five DePuy hip replacement patients would need revision surgery within five years or less.

Other documents showed the conglomerate corporation knew its ASR products carried design defects as soon as 2009, a time when physicians started warning the company their patients were suffering from the following post-op complications:

  • Cancer from metal poisoning
  • Post-op inflammation in and around surgical areas
  • Hearing problems
  • Bone degradation and bone fractures
  • Damaged renal functions
  • Thyroid paralysis
  • Heart disease
  • Skin rash and infections
  • Hip injury reoccurrence
  • Implants unfastening
  • Reduction in bone health

Claims Match can help DePuy metal poisoning victims determine if they’re eligible to join existing MDL litigation to receive fair compensation for their life changing injuries.

Bard ePTFE Mesh Class Action

According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff’s Bard mesh implant area became infected in 2018, and when doctors performed corrective surgery to remove the tainted ePTFE mesh, they discovered the medical device had completely detached and was engulfed in toxic bodily fluids.

This products liability lawsuit asserts ePTFE Bard Mesh products’ are inefficient in supporting and repairing ventral hernias and that Davol and Bard’s negligence caused the victim to experience painful post-op medical complications.

The plaintiff’s attorneys further went on record mentioning the medical device maker knew or should have known that ePTFE Bard Mesh products were faulty. Yet, instead of recalling the product, Davol and Bard made the “deliberate decision” to market their ePTFE Bard Mesh products despite the overpowering evidence that proved ventral hernias meshes were a danger to patients’ lives.

Bard Hernia Mesh Class Action Lawsuits

Bard engineers designed ePTFE Hernia meshes to heal and support ventral hernias and schemed the mesh patch to adhere to surgical areas without attaching to adjacent tissue

About five years after the FDA approved Bard ePTFE products for ventral mesh treatment, surgeons reported Bard implants were detaching with the devices’ ePTFE surface found clinging to underlying tissue.

Physicians also claimed Bard ventral meshs’ imperfect design made the devices susceptible to infection, and once the ePTFEs attached to and scarred onto nearby organs, they were difficult to extract without damaging the healthy tissue.

 

After decades of accusations and a few FDA Bard Mesh recalls, class action lawsuits followed with most complaints claiming Davol and Bard didn’t test their mesh product properly before bringing them to market.

The FDA approved Bard ePTFE Hernia meshes through “fast-track” certification, which allowed the Davol and Bard to escape pre-market testing by showing the Agency its product was “substantially equivalent” to other meshes already approved.

According to the plaintiff in this potential class action lawsuit, Bard ePTFEs should have never qualified for fast track approval because the device maker’s evidence disclosed to the FDA compared Bard’s ventral mesh to a product made twenty years prior that manufacturers pulled from markets after discovering the mesh was inherently defective.

 

Burgerville Data Breach Class Action Lawsuit

Oregon resident, Cassandra Nelson, promptly filled a traditional negligent data breach lawsuit after the announcement and had indicated her lawyers will seek class action certification.

Burgerville owns over forty restaurants throughout Oregon and Washington and has refused to disclose why the company was holding the names, credit and debit card numbers, expiration dates, and the CVV information of former customers without their consent.

CEO Jill Taylor urged all patrons who ran a debit or credit card to pay for their food last year to examine their statements for fraudulent activity.

Taylor further advised that the complexity of the cyber attack makes it impossible to determine how many customers had their personal financial information stolen since the hackers skillfully concealed “their digital footprints.”

Federal investigators have recently named the cyber thieves as Fin7, a group of Eastern Europe cyber criminals that have attacked hundreds of U.S. businesses over the last three years.

Fin7 has likewise stolen millions of customer card records from other major fast-food restaurants like Wendy’s, Arby’s and Chipotle.

Burgerville Class Action Lawsuit

The plaintiff in this Burgerville data breach class action lawsuit claims executives learned of the hack in Aug 2018 but waited until October to inform customers, which clearly violates Oregon consumer protection statutes.

Burgerville countered by asserting the matter called for confidentiality because the company was working with the FBI to find the thieves.

This lawsuit further argues Burgerville was negligent in securing consumer data because the company waited until Sept 22 to eliminate the offending malware from its payment system, which took over eight days to complete.

Nelson also claims Burgerville “compromised” her personal information by gathering and storing her credit card information from sale records without her permission and then failing to keep the data safe from “unauthorized access by hackers.”

The lead plaintiff is pursuing legal damages and a detailed accounting of the data breach on behalf of “yet to be named” class members.

Claims Match will keep a vigilant eye on Burgerville class action proceedings as they unfold, and we’ll inform potential class members when information comes available.

Federal MDL Opioid Epidemic Lawsuits

Trail lawyers representing plaintiffs in thousands of opioid epidemic lawsuits may see their clients forced into one class action proceeding after a federal judge declares consolidation may be the only feasible route to reach a fair settlement for everyone.

Over one thousand attorneys litigating claims against opioid drugmakers, distributors and retailers gathered in a federal Ohio court this week to plead multidistrict litigation (MDL) jurisdiction under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRPC) rules. At the same time, another five hundred opioid epidemic lawyers attended MDL proceedings in state courts around the nation.

U.S. District Judge Dan Aaron Polster in Ohio heard arguments in the federal MDL and hinted that he may have to invoke FRPC Rule 23, which authorizes judges to certify multiple lawsuits one class action when all plaintiffs suffer similar injuries.

Polster’s holding prompted an impromptu session of opioid epidemic MDL attorneys attending HarrisMartin’s MDL Conference in California.

One advocate attending the conference claimed responding to thousands of MDL lawsuits may bankrupt some defendants, and parties with deep pockets may refuse to settle unless one payout would indemnify them from future litigation.

Other MDL lawyers in Ohio believe Polster has the constitutional authority to impose mandatory class action under FRCP Rule 23(b)(1), which removes individual opt out privileges for class members who prefer to file individual claims.

Judge-appointed attorneys who are overseeing federal MDL settlement negotiations in Ohio are now discussing forming a compulsory class of over ten thousand plaintiffs, an idea with limited support from MDL advocates who have spent millions in time and money to bring their individual lawsuits to court.

A decision by Judge Polster to force mandatory class action proceedings and participation from individual plaintiffs suing in mass tort litigation is an extraordinary move for a federal judge to make, according to some California opioid claims attorneys, who regard such a ruling would interfere with the sovereignty of individual state courts.

Lawmakers put MDL in place to join multiple lawsuits with similar harm during discovery and pre-trial proceedings to prevent court clogging redundancy. MDL judges are supposed to send the individual lawsuits back to their original jurisdictions once pretrial motions and discovery ends.

According to Polster, the MDL process has evolved over time to substitute for class action proceedings with intent for mass settlement before heading to court. Polster further stated in January 2018 that his intention was to settle all federal MDL opioid lawsuits brought before him before pretrial motions end.

Jurist attending the HarrisMartin conference seemed to concur with Polster, calling opioid epidemic lawsuits “unique litigation” that even President Trump was to see come to a conclusion.

Theses advocates believe opioid MDL can only end through a “global resolution” that would offer remedies for past, current and future plaintiffs in every court jurisdiction in the United States.