McKenzie Lake Lawyers LLP

April 10, 2015 09:19 ET

McKenzie Lake Lawyers LLP: Canada-Wide Settlement Reached in Fosamax Class Actions

LONDON, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - April 10, 2015) - A settlement has been reached which, if approved by the courts and fully implemented, will resolve Fosamax and Fosavance claims across Canada.

Class and individual actions were filed across Canada on behalf of individuals who used and/or purchased Fosamax and Fosavance in Canada, distributed by Merck (known as MSD outside Canada and the U.S.). The lawsuits included allegations that individuals ingesting Fosamax and/or Fosavance were placed at an increased risk of experiencing various medical conditions including osteonecrosis of the jaw ("ONJ") and/or atypical femur fractures ("AFF") and that a proper warning of these increased risks was not provided.

The allegations made in the lawsuits have not been proven in court and the courts have not taken any position as to the truth or merits of the claims or defences asserted by either side. Merck denies the allegations and remains confident in the efficacy and safety profile of Fosamax and Fosavance.

The settlement is for C$6,375,000.00, and includes payments to claimants, provincial health insurers, payments towards legal costs, and payments for notice and claims administration. If the settlement is approved by the courts, individuals (or their estates) may be eligible to receive payment if they took Fosamax and/or Fosavance and then experienced ONJ or AFF. Spouses and children of eligible claimants may also be eligible for payment.

According to Michael Peerless of McKenzie Lake Lawyers LLP, lead counsel for the plaintiffs who negotiated the settlement, "While these were difficult and protracted negotiations, Merck should be commended for dealing with this issue in a fair and considered manner."

Class Counsel is satisfied with the settlement which, if approved by the courts, will result in payments being distributed to eligible claimants. "This is a good result in a very challenging case," says Sabrina Lombardi, one of the counsel representing Canadian Fosamax and Fosavance class members. "Under the terms of the settlement, eligible claimants will receive payment based on the type of event they experienced and a number of other factors including duration of use, as well as loss of income."

Further information for class members is available at the website http://www.mckenzielake.com/practice-areas/class-actions-law/fosamax-alendronate-sodium.

Notices of upcoming settlement approval hearings will be published in the near future. If the settlement is approved by the courts, further notices will be published which will include information on how to file a claim for payment.

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