Tylenol Autism Lawsuit

Scientific research has established a link between mothers taking Tylenol during pregnancy and an increased risk of their children developing autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and other neurodevelopmental disorders.

Dozens of product liability lawsuits filed against the manufacturer of Tylenol and generic acetaminophen, as well as retailers such as Walmart, Walgreens, and CVS, allege that product manufacturers and retailers knew of the apparent link between in-utero exposure to acetaminophen and the increased risk of serious neurodevelopmental disorders. Despite this knowledge, they failed to warn pregnant women and physicians.

On October 5, 2022, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) consolidated all Tylenol autism lawsuits filed in federal courts into multidistrict litigation (MDL).

The Honorable Judge Denise L. Cote of the Southern District of New York will preside over the MDL, which could ultimately affect more than 1,000 lawsuits involving prenatal use of acetaminophen and subsequent autism/ADHD diagnoses.

The MDL could grow into the largest mass tort class action in U.S. history. It’s too early to tell what compensation plaintiffs can expect, but many believe that most lawsuits will settle outside of court.

If you took Tylenol or the generic acetaminophen while you were pregnant and doctors later diagnosed your child with autism or ADHD, contact Boohoff Law, P.A. for help with your Tylenol Autism Lawsuit. We have extensive experience handling product liability and pharmaceutical liability claims. We can advise you on how to take part in the Tylenol autism class action and help you get the compensation you deserve. Call us today at (877) 999-9999 for your free consultation.

History and Updates Concerning Tylenol Autism Lawsuits

Tylenol Autism LawsuitResearch going back to 2008 has associated an increased rate of autism and other neurological disorders in children when their mothers took Tylenol during pregnancy. One definitive study used a sample of more than 130,000 mothers and their children and monitored mothers and children over periods of three to 11 years. Researchers found a 20 percent higher risk of autism in children exposed to considerable amounts of Tylenol during pregnancy.

As a result of this research, plaintiffs started filing lawsuits. As early as August 2022, motions consolidated Tylenol autism lawsuits into an MDL (albeit with fierce opposition). Nevertheless, the JPML heard oral arguments throughout September and certified the MDL on October 5, naming Judge Cote as the presiding judge.

Starting around late October/early November 2022, law firms spent millions of dollars on television and radio ads regarding Tylenol lawsuits, and numerous lawsuits arose across the country.

On November 14, 2022, Walmart, a defendant in the MDL, filed a preemption motion to dismiss the Tylenol autism lawsuit. Walmart argued it could not change the warning labels on its Equate brand of acetaminophen, citing FDA mandates.

Judge Cote swiftly dismissed the motion and ruled that manufacturers are “responsible for the adequacy of the warnings” on their drug labels and that neither the Pregnancy Warning regulation nor the regulation of generic acetaminophen generally altered that responsibility. In other words, Walmart could have changed the warning labels on its Equate brand if it wanted to.

By the end of November 2022, Judge Cote had finalized the Retailer Liaison Committee (RLC) for the defendants, and she selected the plaintiff’s lawyers for the MDL, including the plaintiff’s leadership committee.

On December 20, 2022, Judge Cote proposed a quick deadline for plaintiffs to file two master complaints: one against retailers of Tylenol/acetaminophen, and the other against manufacturers of the drug. Plaintiffs with a pending complaint in the MDL must have submitted a short-form complaint by January 2023. At the time, plaintiffs had pending lawsuits in Florida, California, Texas, Illinois, and other jurisdictions.

On January 9, 2023, Judge Cote approved the Short-Form Complaint for new plaintiffs filing Tylenol autism lawsuits. Commonly used in class actions, a master complaint involves all plaintiffs in a case and provides a more uniform, accessible, and efficient format for plaintiffs to take part in the MDL.

Plaintiffs wanting to file a short-form complaint for the Tylenol autism MDL must do so within 14 days of bringing their case. This applies whether it was transferred from another district or filed with the MDL.

What the Tylenol Autism MDL Means for You

Judge Cote’s approval of the Short Form Complaint makes it easier for plaintiffs to file Tylenol autism lawsuits regardless of where they live. All pending lawsuits will now go to the MDL in New York’s Southern District Court, and any pending state-level cases may use coordinated discovery under the MDL if they expressly agree to participate. Also, plaintiffs may file any new lawsuits directly under the MDL.

Momentum continues to grow regarding Tylenol autism lawsuits, and legal professionals anticipate hundreds, if not thousands, will join the MDL by April 2023. Some estimates suggest that more than 150,000 plaintiffs will file lawsuits over the next two years.

If you feel you have a claim because you took Tylenol while pregnant and your child later developed autism or ADHD, contact the attorneys at Boohoff Law for help. We have four law offices across Florida, as well as one in Seattle, Washington.

We can help you understand your options for taking part in the MDL while addressing all of your questions or concerns. You can rely on us to fight hard for you throughout any legal proceedings to protect your rights and increase your chances of getting the compensation you need.

Does Tylenol Cause Autism?

Autism is a complex disorder with a heavy genetic component and other contributing factors. However, a large body of scientific evidence establishes a causal link between in-utero exposure to Tylenol/acetaminophen and a later diagnosis of autism or ADHD.

Furthermore, research suggests a dose-dependent relationship between a mother taking Tylenol and the risk of her child developing autism, i.e., the more Tylenol a baby received in the womb, the greater the incidence rate and severity of autism.

For many years, health professionals, including obstetricians, touted Tylenol as a safe and effective alternative to aspirin for pain relief. Aspirin was linked to Reye’s Syndrome in children battling influenza, chickenpox, and other viral infections, and Tylenol became the preferred over-the-counter medication for treating fevers and mild aches and pains throughout the 1970s.

However, starting in the 1980s, autism rates among children began to rise considerably. Since then, researchers have conducted more than 26 epidemiological studies on pregnant women who used Tylenol during pregnancy, and all of them found a link between in-utero acetaminophen exposure and autism or ADHD diagnoses in their children.

In September 2021, 91 scientists signed a consensus statement and recommended in Nature Reviews Endocrinology that pregnant women use caution when taking acetaminophen while pregnant. Incidentally, Tylenol is only one of the dozens of over-the-counter medications that use acetaminophen. Others include DayQuil/NyQuil, Alka-Seltzer Plus, Actifed, Sudafed, Excedrin, Robitussin, Cepacol, and Mucinex.

The signed consensus statement served as a wake-up call to researchers, physicians, and consumers that acetaminophen use among pregnant women could result in adverse, and possibly severe, neurodevelopmental conditions in children. Unfortunately, only recently did such warnings receive the attention they deserve, and consumers are only now beginning to pursue compensation.

These lawsuits might reveal that manufacturers such as Johnson & Johnson knew about the dangers and risks associated with in-utero exposure to acetaminophen before bringing their products to market. If so, it could open the door to even more tortious claims against manufacturers and their marketing tactics, similar to the billion-dollar lawsuits against Big Tobacco several years ago.

How Much Money Can I Get From the Tylenol Autism Lawsuit?

Tylenol LawsuitAlthough the Tylenol autism MDL could become one of the largest mass torts in history, it is far too early to tell what compensation plaintiffs will receive or whether a full settlement offer will result from which plaintiffs receive a share.

Numerous factors will determine individual compensation amounts and whether cases will reach a jury trial, including:

  • The strength of the scientific evidence presented
  • The length of time and amount of acetaminophen a fetus was exposed to in the womb

Many lawyers believe that most Tylenol autism lawsuits will settle outside of court. While civil cases do not require lawyers to prove causation with absolute certainty, attorneys still must establish the likelihood that in-utero exposure to acetaminophen led to a subsequent diagnosis of autism or ADHD.

Added to that is the belief that the severity of the autism diagnosis will influence settlement amounts.

Autism spectrum disorders fall into three levels:

  • Level 1. The mildest form of autism in which the child can speak in complete sentences but may have difficulty understanding social cues. These children often struggle with organization and planning and may find it difficult to move from one task to the next. Children diagnosed with ADHD will likely fall into this category as well.
  • Level 2. Children with Level 2 autism have more obvious verbal and non-verbal issues, and the hallmark of Level 2 is a child engaging in repetitive behavior and struggling greatly with changes in routine.
  • Level 3. Children with Level 3 autism exhibit the same symptoms as levels 1 and 2, but their traits are more severe. Children may have a very limited vocabulary with difficulty coping with change, and they may only seek social interaction if it meets their immediate needs.

For a comprehensive review of your case and an objective opinion on the compensation you could receive, you can reach out to the attorneys at Boohoff Law for a free consultation.

How Do I Know My Child Has Autism?

If you took acetaminophen during pregnancy, you may have concerns about your child developing autism, and you can look for the most common symptoms of autism spectrum disorder in your child, including:

  • Delayed speech development or inability to communicate
  • Avoidance of eye contact
  • Inability or extreme unwillingness to understand social cues or engage socially
  • Disproportionate or extreme reactions to sounds, touch, smell, and other sensory issues
  • High adherence to routines and structure
  • High-stress levels resulting from minor changes in routine

A diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder can only come from a licensed physician, and if you feel your child may have autism, you should have them evaluated as soon as possible.

The Costs of Autism

Autism can significantly affect a child’s life, including their ability to learn, work, and develop important social skills. Additionally, you as a parent may experience considerable stress in dealing with your autistic child and getting them the help they need.

Children with autism may require medication, treatment, or therapy, as well as learning accommodations and outside tutoring. In extreme cases, autism can require life-long care, and you may have to take time off work or forfeit career opportunities to care for your child. You may also find that you have to reduce your standard of living just to care for your child.

Get the Compensation You Need

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The MDL class action against manufacturers and retailers of Tylenol and acetaminophen may provide substantial compensation to families impacted by the ordeal. If you took Tylenol or any medication containing acetaminophen while you were pregnant, and your child suffers from autism, ADHD, or some other neurodevelopmental disorder, you should contact Boohoff Law immediately at (877) 999-9999 for your free consultation.

One of our experienced attorneys will sit with you, review your case, and determine if you qualify. If so, we can file your suit for you and fight hard for you to help you get the compensation you and your family deserve.

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